Nine panels smashed on Shoreham’s ferry bridge by ‘group of youths’

The Adur Ferry Footbridge has been left severely damaged after young vandals smashed several of the glass panels.

Friday, 14th June 2019, 1:36 pm
Damage to the ferry bridge in Shoreham. Pic: Maggie Peek

Nine panels have been broken on the bridge, taking the total damaged to 17, through a combination of vandalism and natural causes.

Sussex Police confirmed witnesses had reported seeing a group of youths smashing the panels shortly after 9pm on Monday (June 10).

After searching the area there was no trace of the suspects, nor any further lines of enquiry, police said, but anyone with information is asked to report it online or call 101, quoting serial 1293 of 10/06.

Damage to the ferry bridge in Shoreham. Pic: Maggie Peek

Adur councillor Joss Loader bemoaned how regularly the ferry bridge was being damaged.

“The bridge is a great asset to Shoreham and is hugely important to our community,” she said.

“So it’s a great shame that yet again more panels have been smashed. There has been endless speculation about the causes of the ongoing damage and it appears that it’s a mix of manufacturing issues and vandalism.

“There are no easy answers but I’d urge the public to be vigilant and to report anything suspicious. There is CCTV on the bridge and I understand footage is being reviewed.”

Damage to the ferry bridge in Shoreham. Pic: Maggie Peek

West Sussex County Councillor Kevin Boram estimated the ‘mindless damage’ had likely incurred costs of around £60,000 and agreed that the causes were from both vandalism and structural issues.

A lack of rubber fixings between the glass and metal surround left the panes vulnerable to damage, he said, and the lamination on several of the panels had started to come away.

Discussions were underway with the original contractor to rectify the problems, he added, but called for tough sanctions on the vandals to deter anyone with similar intentions.

A spokesman for West Sussex County Council confirmed plans had been put forward to replace the eight previously damaged panes before the most recent incident.

An order would now be placed to replace the nine broken panels, the spokesman added.