New gates installed at St Andrews harbour
Work has begun to install new gates at St Andrews harbour after the previous set were swept from their hinges during a period of severe weather in autumn 2012.
The replacement gates were commissioned by the St Andrews Harbour Trust after a campaign raised in excess of £100k to fund the project. The Trust received donations from individuals, local charitable trusts and a government grant.
It is not known when exactly the gates at the harbour were originaly installed but the first mention of their use is in a book of historical remarks on the City of St Andrews by William Douglass in 1728. They have been replaced on a number of occasions since that date, however. The date of the installation of the damaged gates is unknown but they were transferred from a site on the Caledonian Canal.
The design of the new gates is very similar to the previous set, in keeping with the historic environment. The only major difference is that they are made of Greenheart timber rather than Douglas fir, as Greenheart timber is resistant to wet rot and is unaffected by sun and salt-water.
During their manufacture, existing fittings from the original gates were reused to reduce cost, carry forward a historical perspective and remain visually appealing in the setting of the harbour.
The new gate leaves and slucies are now hydraulically operated, which will be particularly beneficial for less physically able users of the harbour.
It is expected that the installation will be completed by early to mid-July.
Trust Chairman Andrew Lumsden added: “During this time vessel and pedestrian movements will be largely unaffected, however, St Andrews Harbour Trust would like to apologise for any regrettable, but unavoidable, inconvenience experienced and thank residents and visitors alike for their patience in any disruption of access to the harbour bridge and walkway.”