Published: 09/07/2018 19:00 - Updated: 06/07/2018 11:16

Revamped harbour is a boost to community

Written byJamie Hall

 

Ullapool harbour
The new jetty at Ullapool harbour, which has been extended and widened as part of a refurbishment.

The community of Ullapool are celebrating after the highly-anticipated project to refurbish the village’s pier was completed.

The revamped and extended slipway offers an improved base for residents and visitors to launch boats on Lochbroom.

It also features enhanced facilities for inshore fishermen, and will serve as a base for the local yacht club.

Politicians and harbour bosses believe the refurbished jetty will make the area more accessible and bring benefits to the local economy.

Ullapool harbour master Kevin Peach said: "It was quite a challenging project. We had quite a lot of bad weather just after we started in January, and then we had to wait for the big spring tides so we could carry out a lot of the work.

"The jetty was in fairly poor shape as it had been there for more than 100 years and had spent the entire time being battered by the sea.

"We made the jetty wider and also lengthened it. That helped to stabilise the old walls.

"Historically the slipway here has mainly been used for  leisure but we are very hopeful that now the work has been completed, it will be much more accessible to everyone.

"We would expect our inshore fishing fleet to land their catches at the jetty because it will make their lives a lot easier.

"I have had chats with a lot of the guys who work the fleet and they are very excited.

"I would say we now have some of the best harbour facilities in the west of Scotland.

"I would like to think that our own leisure users will benefit from the new jetty, but we are also hopeful that visitors will find that they are able to access it as well.

"I really think that it will bring huge benefits to this area."

The harbour was previously owned by Highland Council, but was taken over by Ullapool Harbour Trust.

The project was funded by the trust and was supported by the Royal Bank of Scotland, Highlands and Islands Enterprise and Highland & Moray European & Maritime Fisheries Fund Programme.

The work, which was carried out by Lybster-based Lochshell Engineering, involved widening and strengthening the existing structure using specially-designed materials.

The result has seen the pier extended by 16.5m and widened by 1.8m, creating what harbour bosses have called a "top class" slipway.

Councillor Derek MacLeod said: "I would like to applaud the work of the harbour trust for getting this work done.

"They have shown great initiative to get the redevelopment completed.

"It will be a great boost to the local fisherman, as well as pleasure boat users.

"It’s something that will definitely benefit the town’s economy."

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