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Temporary pier enables ferry service

The Pontoon and Dock Company, part of the P&D Marine Group, has won a supply agreement to provide a temporary pier on London UK's historic River Thames.

The agreement will see the temporary pier installed for Thames Clipper which is operating the Hammersmith Bridge ferry service whilst the landmark bridge itself remains closed following safety concerns.

Neill Walker, Group Business Development Manager commented: ‘We have been working to provide a solution for this project for many months and are now seeing the concept put forward. We are very pleased to be a part of this project.’

Hammersmith Bridge has been closed to traffic since April 2019 when flaws were first discovered, with a full repair possibly taking more than six years. Transport Secretary Grant Shapps set up a Task Force, chaired by Roads Minister Baroness Vere, to “make sure we bash heads together and get this thing sorted,” in September of 2020.

Neill added: ‘Once we provided a solution, we had to demonstrate the effectiveness of the pontoon that we were proposing. The EZ Dock system is not like a traditional steel framed concrete float construction. The pontoon is a modular system that offers outstanding stability and has proved itself time and time again.

“To ensure all parties were confident in the proposal, a test was carried out prior to the final tender being presented. This involved a 40-metre section being built on the Thames to assess how it behaved under tidal conditions found on the Thames, and the addition of a large Thames Clipper craft creating a wash as it manoeuvred alongside the pontoon.

“Cyclists and wheelchair users as well as foot passengers tested the pontoon for stability during the test. The results surpassed everyone’s expectations, which myself and the team knew it would, however Thames Clipper needed to be confident in selecting The Pontoon and Dock Company that it would deliver a quality product for this high-profile project.”

The installation of the temporary Hammersmith Bridge pier will commence at the beginning of August 2021 and should be ready to receive the first passengers across it by early September. The pier is expected to be used by up to 800 passengers an hour.

Exhibitor: P&D Marine Services

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