The restoration of Madeira Terrace will be completed within the next few years, the council has vowed.

In an exclusive interview with The Argus, council leader Bella Sankey committed to restoring the historic arches by the next local election in 2027.

Cllr Sankey said: “It was a Labour administration that started the restoration project and it will be a Labour administration that finishes it.

“I love the Madeira Terraces, like deeply, and we are absolutely committed as an administration to its restoration. 

“We talk about heritage in the city and all of these iconic buildings we have, but Madeira Terraces is really unique.”

However, she said she was unable to give a more specific timeframe as to when the restoration will be complete.

The Argus: An artist's impression of what the completed Madeira Terrace restoration will look likeAn artist's impression of what the completed Madeira Terrace restoration will look like

Work to restore 40 of the 151 crumbling iron arches is set to start next spring after falling into a state of disrepair over many years.

A contractor is expected to be appointed in the autumn.

However, some campaigners have raised concerns about delays to the project, as restoration work had been due to start later this year.

They fear that any delays will result in increased costs for the council and allow the structure to fall into a worse state.

However, Cllr Sankey denied this. She said: “It’s actually the reverse and the reason for that is that we’re doing really painstaking preparatory work. The reason that we’re doing it so carefully and so thoroughly is because our advice is that the better prepared we are for the specialist work that needs to be done, we will actually make cost savings.

“It’s to ensure that we’re doing it efficiently and that we are not going to end up with unexpected costs.”


She also said that the council is looking into alternatives while the Madeira Terrace Victorian lift at Concorde 2 remains closed due to the need for major structural work.

Cllr Sankey said: “One big concern is while the lift is out of action, that creates accessibility issues and people can’t get down onto the seafront.

“Residents have suggested a bus route through there and our transport chair is considering this and speaking to the bus company about what might be possible.”