A BOURNEMOUTH councillor insists "every effort" should be made to ensure the town's East Cliff lift operates again.

The funicular railway has been out of action for more than two years, following a landslip that damaged the lift's steps and destroyed a toilet and cafe block at the base of the cliffs.

Last week the Daily Echo reported how there are currently no plans in place to start work at the site.

Head of operation for Bournemouth Council's tourism services, Chris Saunders, conceded the authority's aim of carrying out repairs by 2019 had been made "perhaps naively," as predicated costs of repairs following the April 2016 landslip are predicted to run into seven figures.

While reinstatement of the lift would be a relatively straightforward job, substantial - and costly - work to stabilise the cliffs would be needed beforehand.

Now, Bournemouth Council Boscombe ward member, Cllr Phil Stanley-Watts, is calling for action.

He explained: "I feel we need to get around the table, with Meyrick Estates and perhaps the Environment Agency and try to draw up a plan of action to get the lift back.

"Stabilisation of the cliffs is a priority."

"We will need to try and get some grant funding, but I don't think it is a good idea just to leave things like this."

Cllr Stanley-Watts told the Echo he will now raise the issue with the relevant officers, and may table a question to full council at next month's meeting.

He added: "My ward is includes Boscombe seafront and I feel very strongly that the cliffs should be stabilised along there and defended at all costs against the sea.

"As a former member of the civic society I also feel very strongly about heritage, and the cliff lift is part of the heritage of Bournemouth.

"Every effort should be made to try and get it back working again."

Prior to its closure the lift had been in place for 110 years.