Historic Pier Restoration Campaign A Success

The repair of the historic Hastings Pier is to begin, following a successful community campaign by a local charity.

Communities Secretary Eric Pickles has welcomed the move, which will see the pier reopened after being saved from disrepair and abandonment by a local community group.

The pier is expected to reopen to the public in 2015.

Mr Pickles attended a ceremonial opening today, where he praised the Hastings Pier Charity.

"This is a complete turnaround in Hastings Pier’s fortunes and will secure its future for local people, businesses and tourists to enjoy," he said.

"It’s yet another great example of what is happening across the country when government gives power back to communities to decide how best to run things locally."

The Grade II listed structure was built in 1872, but began to fall into disrepair in the 1960s before finally closing in 2008.

It was further damaged in an arson attack in 2010.

The 'save our pier' campaign began shortly after the pier’s closure, with funding assistance from government and the National Lottery Heritage fund.

The Hastings Pier Charity takes full ownership of the pier from the council today.

Simon Opie, Chief Executive Officer of the Hastings Pier Charity said: "We want a new pier as well as to restore the old, using sustainable materials wherever we can. We’ll provide open space not just for promenading but for family and community celebrations; a real attraction for tourists and a valuable asset for locals and the town. We want to offer a 21st century take on the traditional English pier and for it to be used often by locals and visitors alike, a people’s pier."

Hastings and the pier charity have benefited from £14million government, lottery and council support.

The pier charity has pledged to favour local people and businesses both in rebuilding and running the pier.


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