Page last updated at 21:05 GMT, Wednesday, 25 February 2009

Surf reef site visit is postponed

Surfers and swimmers at Boscombe beach
The reef is expected to increase the size of the existing surf at Boscombe

The firm building Europe's first artificial surf reef in Dorset, which is a year behind schedule, has postponed a visit to the site.

Work to build the reef, off Boscombe, was suspended by New Zealand-based ASR Ltd in November due to bad weather, but is due to restart in April.

Mike Woods, of ASR Ltd, has said the firm is committed to the project. He was due to visit the site on Thursday.

It was due to open by October 2008 but has been delayed until September 2009.

Bournemouth Borough Council said the planned visit by Mr Woods had been postponed because he had been delayed in India.

He will now visit the site next week, on a day yet to be confirmed.

'Flagship project'

Work on the reef has also already nearly doubled from 1.4m to 2.7m.

Additional costs include extra sand for the reef and delays caused by the bad weather.

The project was meant to have been completed by October, with an agreed overrun to December 2008 if the weather was bad.

But ASR Ltd has said its divers were struggling in the colder conditions and that work would resume in April.

Last week, Mr Woods said: "ASR is committed to this flagship project - we know the world is watching and we intend to deliver."

The artificial reef is part of the a wider regeneration project in Boscombe, which will now cost 11m.

ASR Ltd has said the reef "will magnify and make the most of even the smallest and least favourable wave conditions" at Boscombe.

It will be one of four artificial reefs worldwide, including Narrowneck, Queensland, Cables, Western Australia and Mount Maunganui, New Zealand.

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Work starts on town's surf reef
16 Jul 08 |  Dorset

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