This is why repairs to the Shields Ferry could take up to a month as transport chiefs explain difficulties in fixing storm damage
The Shields Ferry operator has explained why it could take up to a month to get passenger boats crossing the River Tyne once again.
The service between South Shields and North Shields have been suspended after it was discovered the landing on the north side had been left with “significant” damage by winter storms last Friday, November 8.
Nexus, which operates the passenger boats, had brought the link to a halt while it looked to carry out repairs, but went on to confirm it could be off for a month after investigations found structural issues.
It has said the poor weather conditions had “accelerated” damage to the structure.
Now engineers have said scaffolding will need to be constructed under the landing to enable them to fix the cracks.
Until work is complete, it is not safe for the ferry to use the landing, with a bus service operating via the Tyne Tunnel set up to help passengers reach each landing spot.
Huw Lewis, customer services director for Nexus, said: “We discovered cracks and damage to the jetty on the North Shields landing last week following winter storms and we’ve done a safety assessment with engineers and it’s just not possible to operate until repairs can take place on that landing.
“Now that’s not an easy process, scaffolding has to be put in underneath the jetty and then specialist engineers will make those repairs.
“So, we estimate it could be up to a month before we’re able to bring the ferry service back into operation.
"Until then, there is a replacement bus service, it leaves from near the BT centre or the North Shields Ferry Landing, times are on our website and on the Facebook page, so you can see full details there.
“I’d suggest leave a little extra time for your journey, 10 or 15 minutes extra, and the departure times from South Shields are different to normal, but the buses are leaving on the half-hour and on the hour throughout the normal timetabled day of the ferry.”