FOR more than 800 years it has stood proud as a symbol of our city.

Protecting Sotonians from onslaughts throughout the centuries and even standing defiant against the raids of the Luftwaffe which caused so much devastation around it.

But now Southampton’s historic Bargate is facing another battle.

But this time not from any foreign enemy, instead from the rain.

Yes, the weather is now the biggest threat to the future of the monument and Southampton City Council is about to spend up to £250,000 to refurbish the landmark which has become the victim of erosion.

The work comes at a time when the city council’s budget is stretched to the limit to provide a number of vital services.

But the Bargate – the gateway to the original walled city – is the symbol of Southampton and as council leader Simon Letts says, it is the “duty of the council to preserve it for future generations”.

Spending £250,000 is a small price to pay, so let us all hope the work is a success and the Bargate will stand proud in the heart of the city for another 800 years.