The switch-on of a historic fountain has been delayed by several more weeks.

Renovation and refurbishment of the 19th century Victoria Fountain in Old Steine Gardens, Brighton, is still ongoing after major structural problems were discovered last year.

Although it had been hoped the restoration would be completed in March, the city council have now confirmed it may not be open to the public until mid-September, some six months later than originally hoped.

However, the restoration work of the fountain, constructed to mark Queen Victoria’s 27th birthday, is set to be complete “before the end of this month”.

Lead councillor for heritage Alan Robins said: “We expect to have completed the refurbishment of the Victoria Fountain and have it functioning before the end of this month.

“The site clearance will then begin - this is likely to take two to three weeks.

“We’re expecting our contractors to be able to hand the site back to the council in mid-September.”

Restoration work has included replacing corroded bolts that hold the fountain together, levelling the bowls that support the cascading water and refurbishing the fountain and its intricate electrics and waterworks.

The Victoria Fountain was previously restored between 1990 and 1995 in readiness for a visit by the then Prince Charles, with a plaque at the site commemorating the royal visit.

Standing 32ft high, the fountain features three levels of cascading water as well as a large cast-iron pool with a rim decorated with intricate mouldings.

The pool was originally filled with water lilies and goldfish.

The fountain’s opening ceremony in 1846 featured a royal salute fired from the pier head at noon, along with musical performances and fireworks.

However, concerns grew after the structure began listing to one side, with a sinkhole appearing close to the site in January last year.

The fountain was switched off for “safety reasons” with restoration beginning at the start of this year to address “significant and complex structural problems”.