Work begins on Gibraltar Point visitor centre

Gibraltar Point Visitor Centre
Gibraltar Point Visitor Centre

Work has started on a new £1m visitor centre at Gibraltar Point Nature Reserve near Skegness.

The spectacular building, which will include a café and educational information will take shape over the coming months.

It replaces the former visitor centre, which suffered extensive flood damage during the storm surge in December 2013. The new building will be raised on stilts to protect it from any future flooding.

Coun Colin Davie, executive member for economic development at Lincolnshire County Council, said: “This is an opportunity to make Gibraltar Point even more attractive to visitors – an opportunity we intend to take full advantage of.

“The new visitor centre has been designed to make the most of the reserve’s stunning views, with expansive windows facing the dunes and sea, and a rooftop viewing deck.

“Combined with the new North Sea Observatory at Chapel St Leonards, this improved attraction will help extend the traditional tourist season on the coast, providing a significant boost to the local economy.”

The council has developed the ambitious plans in partnership with the Lincolnshire Wildlife Trust, who will continue to run the site.

Paul Learoyd, chief executive, Lincolnshire Wildlife Trust, said: “We have worked with the county council at Gibraltar Point for over 65 years, and look forward to continuing this partnership for many years to come. Gibraltar Point has been popular for generations – the new centre will hopefully encourage more visitors to discover this wonderful reserve.”

The work on the new visitor centre is being carried out by Lincolnshire firm John Martin-Hoyes Limited, who will also refurbish the old coastguard building adjacent to the construction site.

Simon Newman from John Martin-Hoyes said: “As a local contractor, we’re delighted to be a part of this project. I’m sure visitors will be impressed with the final result.”

The project is being funded by Lincolnshire County Council (£430k), the Lincolnshire Wildlife Trust (£200k) and the Government’s Coastal Communities Fund (£420k).

Gibraltar Point remains open to visitors, with opportunities for walks and birdwatching. Temporary facilities, including catering, are provided on-site.