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Ground movement-damaged Scarborough chalet demolition set start

Scarborough Borough Council has said that demolition of chalets at South Bay damaged by a retaining wall collapse is set to start this week.

The council said that the chalets were already in a “distressed state” after ground movements caused the retaining wall to fail in March but the collapse of the chalet structures last week has fast tracked.

A report undertaken by Alan Wood and Partners following the March failure showed the sandstone block retaining wall had failed along a 15m section and the top of the wall was resting against the Grade II listed chalets, causing them to deflect. The report stated that a 4m section of ground retained by the wall had sunk by 0.5m and this depression had increased to 1m by April this year.

According to Alan Wood, the retaining wall was found on or close to bedrock and it believed the failure was caused by increased pore water pressure from a wetter than average winter rather than slope instability.

A £78,000 fund was agreed by the council in October to make the structure safe and appoint a consulting engineer to undertake investigation work. Haskoning DHV was expected to be appointed to undertake the investigation and design work. The council said that the time that demolition and reconstruction would be undertaken in two phases and that a bid for funding for the reconstruction from the council’s capital investment strategy was intended in due course.

The October meeting highlighted the potential issues with delaying demolition of the chalets due to the ongoing “degradation of the failed retaining wall and slope”.

The council has said that it is now looking to “expediate” the process.

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