We are writing to let you know about plans that are being put in place for the recommencement of work on the first phase of the Folkestone Seafront development.

Whilst many businesses were required to close following government guidance to lock-down in response to COVID19, the construction industry was actively encouraged to continue operating, providing contractors could comply with social distancing measures and ensure safe working for their employees. Initially some of the advice was unclear and therefore measures proved to be difficult to implement on many construction sites. There were also critical interruptions to the supply of materials and self-isolation by subcontractors reduced the size of available workforces. Jenner Contractors took a duty of care decision to suspend work on the Folkestone Seafront site until these issues could be resolved.

Throughout this pause in work, the management team at Jenner has worked hard to ensure that strict new working procedures could be implemented. These involve enhanced safety, hygiene, social distancing and cleaning measures, working to the clear directive issued by the Construction Leadership Council. We are pleased to advise that these issues have now been addressed and resolved. A management team is now back on site to implement procedures for the safe, phased return to work, with piling and groundworks expected to commence later in May.

In the meantime, the Folkestone Harbour and Seafront Development Company team has continued to work on other parts of our project. As many will know, sections of the site were closed when it became clear that the Harbour Arm and station were being visited by increasing numbers during the fine weather that was experienced in April. During this time, our in-house team has been working continuously to undertake maintenance and repairs, always observing appropriate rules relating to distancing in the workplace. Their work has included repairs to buildings, painting, surface renewal, signage and planting, all of which are difficult to achieve in poor weather or when the Harbour Arm is very busy. New WIFI is being installed, and the car park is being fitted with a new payment system (ANPR) which includes the option to pay by card. Alternatively, drivers can open an online account, removing the need to use ticket machines. Finally, the landscape gardening team have also observed how well their planting programme is thriving in the absence of pedestrian traffic, and we hope this will encourage visitors to tread even more carefully as footpaths and walkways are opened up in due course.

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