BRIGHTLINGSEA Lido bosses fear the popular pool will not reopen this year.

Volunteers at Brightlingsea Lido, in Promenade Way, were left devastated after it was left flooded in the wake of Storm Ciara in February.

Waters breached the sea walls in Brightlingsea, leaving offices, changing rooms and the café submerged.

Within hours kind-hearted residents and volunteers had rallied round to help with the clean up and thousands of pounds were raised by local people.

It had been hoped the lido would reopen in May, but due to the coronavirus pandemic it's now feared it will not open at all this year.

In a statement, the Brightlingsea Lido trustees said: "Unfortunately, we do not think it is going to be realistic to open the lido for the 2020 season.

"Given that the preparation time to get the pool ready under normal circumstances is six to eight weeks, it seems increasingly unlikely that it will be able to open this year.

"It is hard to believe that it is not even two months since the Brightlingsea seafront and promenade were overwhelmed by a tidal surge that left over 70 beach huts damaged and the lido site and cafe severely flooded.

"The damage to the heart of the Lido was significant with the plant room electrics and newly installed technology and pumps virtually wiped out."

"Within a few weeks the world has changed and now nothing can be predicted with any certainty.

"The café will be subject to government decisions around safety and social distancing many months ahead.

"Everything is on hold but the trustees feel that we need to be realistic about the slim chances for a Brightlingsea Lido swim season in 2020."

Brightlingsea Lido, in Promenade Way, opened in 1932 and is the only remaining public lido in Essex.

It was saved from closure in 2018 after Brightlingsea Town Council agreed to take on the lease from Tendring Council.

The trustees hope to establish the lido as a Charitable Incorporated Organisation to secure it for future generations.

"We have every confidence that we will achieve this, despite this setback, and we will work towards making 2021 the best lido season ever," it added.