MONTROSE Port Authority (MPA) has issued an apology to local residents disturbed by noise coming from an £8 million construction project at the harbour.
The authority is currently building two new deep-water berths on the south side of the port to improve facilities for larger vessels. Once complete, the berths will be suitable for ships with a draught of up to eight metres.
Work on the £8.2 million scheme began last June and was scheduled to take a year to complete, but the recent complaints have centred around noise associated with piling operations, which harbour chief executive John Paterson said could be finished within the next month depending on weather conditions.
The two berths will replace a section of quayside which collapsed in 2003, and will have a total length of 220m.
The complaints, mainly from residents at the south end of town, were relayed to the port authority by local councillor Paul Valentine.
Mr Valentine said: “I’ve received a few complaints regarding noise but I don’t think it was anything particularly serious. It was more they didn’t know what was happening and were wondering what the noise was.
“There were issues raised regarding how loud the noise was and that it went on after 5pm. It was explained to me that 7pm was their cut-off. Hopefully people will understand the need for it.”
Mr Paterson said MPA is conscious that the noise level has irritated some members of the public.
He said: “MPA wishes to apologise for any inconvenience suffered and would like to reassure the public that the contractors, consultants and MPA are all endeavouring to ensure that such disturbance is minimised.
“The construction of the deep-water berths is an important element in ensuring that the port at Montrose is capable of sustaining its significant importance to the local economy. The essential piling operations are now some 40 per cent complete and, given suitably benign weather conditions, these should complete within a further four weeks.”