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Southern Water confirm half the Gorrell Tank will reopen tomorrow in time for Whitstable Oyster Festival

Half of the Gorrell Tank car park will reopen tomorrow after Southern Water announced it has completed temporary repair works. 

About 100 spaces will be available for motorists at Whitstable's biggest pay and display following its sudden closure in April.

The car park was closed because of safety reasons following an underground inspection sparking a parking crisis across the town. 

The 245-space car park was closed in April for safety reasons

The 245-space car park was closed in April for safety reasons

Engineers discovered a number of concrete columns had corroded sparking fears of a collapse.

Two thousand tons of silt have been removed since the closure with temporary repairs to more than 40 supporting pillars.

Items discovered during the works included a garden chair, iron bars, planks of wood, tankards and metal jugs and half a bottle of wine. 

Engineers under the car park

Engineers under the car park

Jon Yates, Southern Water Project Manager, said: “We are pleased to have been able to complete these repairs on schedule and thank people for their patience while we’ve been working.

"Half of the car park is now reopened and we hope this will help accommodate the expected influx of visitors to the town this summer.”

Cllr Peter Vickery-Jones, Executive Member for Transport at Canterbury City Council, says having half the car park available for the start of the Oyster Festival is "fantastic".

Cllr Peter Vickery-Jones

Cllr Peter Vickery-Jones

He said: "We know that it has been a difficult job and are grateful for the co-operation they have shown to complete the work so quickly.

"Together with the temporary car parks being provided during the summer by local organisations including the Whitstable Football Club, Whitstable Chamber of Commerce and WhitstableJuniorSchool, we are now at the same capacity as we would be in any usual summer period.

"We hope that this will enable visitors and residents to enjoy their time in the town over the summer."

Southern Water, which owns the land, is working closely with Canterbury City Council on both a short-term and long-term solution at the site.

For more information visit www.southernwater.co.uk/gorrelltank.

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