Yet another twist has surfaced in the ongoing saga of replacement of the lift at the Ventnor Botanical Garden.
It seems that the delegated decision made by Cllr George Brown to authorize the replacement of the beleaguered lift may have been a bit hasty.
Further investigation has revealed that the Italian designed Maspero lift includes it's own solar powered electricity supply which Maspero also designed and has used successfully on lifts installed in Italy and Spain.
The problem seems to be that Maspero designed the solar array powering the Botanical Garden lift to be installed in a weather protected shed which was intended to protect it from the harsher northern climate here and allow for easier year-round maintenance. Due to the installation of the solar panels inside the shed little or any natural light manages to reach the array and generate the amount of electricity required to operate the lift.
Maspero representatives say the Ventnor Botanical Garden lift is the first indoor solar powered electrical generating system in the world and that the unique design has been submitted for an international sustainability design award.
The Overview and Scrutiny Committee is reviewing the situation and Maspero claims that the system indeed works when the electrical lights inside the shed are turned on and that both the shed and solar panel electricity generating array are quite serviceable by themselves.