WORK has started on the new observation tower on the seafront at Fleetwood’s Rossall Point.
And it is hoped the distinctive new design will make the tower one of the town’s most iconic buildings and an attraction in its own right.
At 14 metres tall the tower will act as a beacon and destination along Wyre’s seafront linking the new developments on the promenade at Cleveleys and the Marine Hall Gardens in Fleetwood.
It is the latest phase of Wyre Council’s £1.6m Sea Change regeneration programme.
The contractors, Fylde Coast-based Parkinsons, have started on site with the initial groundworks including piling and foundations.
This will be followed by the partial demolition of the existing building and construction works including the installation of the steel frame and eventually work on the interior.
The building is due to be completed by summer.
Councillor Gordon McCann, Cabinet member with responsibility for economic development at Wyre Council said: “It’s full steam ahead now with this exciting project which is a key part of our Sea Change programme to regenerate the seafront.
“Rossall Point will become a focal point on the coastline and the link between Cleveleys and Fleetwood, allowing us to promote the whole area as one fantastic destination. Not only that, it will be a valuable facility for the local community too.”
The tower will provide a viewing platform for the general public and bird watchers with fantastic views over the Irish Sea and the Lune Deep, the Lakeland fells and the Fylde coast.
Its views from the top will be projected onto a screen in the education centre on the ground floor.
The building will also provide a base for the National Coast Watch Institution who keep a watch over boats and visitors to Morecambe Bay.
Wyre Council has also started a campaign for local people to name the tower.
Meanwhile, the local Coastwatch group is one of five charities which is being supported a group of female sponsored runners called the Goal-den Girls. Some of the money they raise will go towards providing new computer equipment and furnishing for the new observation tower.
First up is their own all-women 10k run on March 25, along Blackpool prom, then they are taking part in the Edinburgh Marathon on May 27.
Among those involved are Fleetwood ladies Kim Martin, wife of Fleetwood’s Coastwatch station manager Steve Martin, and Mary Hawes. To find out more, visit www.fyldecoastrunning and click on either Goal-den Girls or 10k.