HOMES will be evacuated this weekend to allow for the demolition of three iconic Inverclyde cranes.

The structures at Inchgreen will be brought down by controlled explosion early tomorrow morning and there will be an exclusion zone in place around the area for safety reasons.

It means people living in 20 properties in the Kingston Dock estate will have to be evacuated as a precaution.

Houses and flats along Scott Way and Iron Way are located right next to one of the cranes, which is understood to be stuck where it is and will have to be demolished at its current location.

The other two were moved away from the mouth of the dry dock several weeks ago.

Wirral-based Technical Demolition Services (TDS), which also has an office in Glasgow, will carry out the ‘blow down’ and are advising people to stay well away from Inchgreen and surrounding areas.

Craig Wilson, the company’s commercial director, said: “There will be an exclusion zone in place that will be enforced by Police Scotland from early morning until after completion.

“It will take in the Inchgreen site itself and certain sections of local housing, down to the waterside and down to the municipal waste centre also taking in the car park used by Arnold Clark.

“People shouldn’t have access to the site.

“Approximately 20 homes will be evacuated.”

Restrictions, including the closure of Pottery Street leading to the council recycling centre, will be in place from 6-10am.

Police and staff from the demolition company will be patrolling the area to ensure there is nobody near the blast site.

The Tele revealed in April how Inchgreen owners Peel Ports Clydeport wanted to tear down the iconic cranes, which have been a landmark of the Inverclyde skyline for half a century.

Bosses say the steel structures have not been used for more than a decade and are no longer fit for purpose. 

Mr Wilson says he does not want to deter people from watching the controlled explosion but urged spectators to keep a safe distance.

He said: “If anyone wants to view it go to the best place away from the site.

“Police search and rescue will go into the area in the morning, which is standard procedure, and go there with dogs, do checks and make sure it’s all clear.”