A £140,000 restoration project has begun after it was discovered that Barry Island’s iconic Western Shelter was suffering from concrete cancer.

Concrete cancer is caused when the steel reinforcing within a concrete slab begins to rust.

As the steel rusts it expands, displacing the concrete around it, causing it to become brittle and crack.

Signs of concrete cancer include ‘crazing’ – a network of lines or cracks in the surface – and cracking concrete).

Essential work began to the Whitmore Bay Grade II-listed structure on Monday, January 29, and is scheduled to take around eight weeks.

Specialist contractor Concrete Repair Limited arrived at the shelter to start a process of repair and restoration that involves protecting the structure against corrosion so it can be enjoyed by residents and visitors for years into the future.

Businesses that rent space in the shelter have been kept fully updated about the works.

The maintenance is expected to finish in time for the busy Easter bank Holiday.

Scaffolding and hoarding has been erected beneath the shelter to ensure the safety of the public and has been specially designed to maintain access to the businesses.

In keeping with the history of the shelter, the finished works will be given a paint coating to match the existing shade.

Vale of Glamorgan Council cabinet member for regeneration and planning, Cllr Jonathan Bird said: “We’re delighted to undertake this work, which will help restore Barry Island’s Western Shelter to its former glory.

“Significant funds have been invested into this project and in Concrete Repair Limited, we’re confident we’ve found a company capable of completing this project to the highest standards.

“This is the latest in a long list of regeneration work to have been carried out by the council at the Island in recent years.

“These efforts include upgrading the Grade II-listed Edwardian shelter, the provision of modern toilet facilities and the creation of distinctive new beach huts.”

Cafe owner, Marco Zeraschi added: “It’s a listed building and it has got to be done to keep it in good condition and keep it visibly pleasing so Barry Island is up there with the top resorts.”