Hastings Pier will be closed until March so that urgent safety work can be carried out, its new owner has revealed.
Sheikh Abid Gulzar, a hotelier and developer who also owns Eastbourne pier, said that a small fire caused by an electrical fault had highlighted the need for urgent repairs to the pier.
Gulzar bought the pier in June for £100,000. He made the purchase after the pier underwent a £14.2M rebuild after it was hit by a fire in 2010. Rebuild costs were met with the help of the an £11.4M grant from the Heritage Lottery Fund and 3,000 shareholders who bought a minimum stake of £100.
In a statement, Gulzar said: “Once the necessary repairs and improvements are completed Hastings Pier will become a jewel in the crown of tourist attractions across the United Kingdom.”
He added: “It is essential for the future success of the pier that revenue streams are increased as this will also offer additional employment opportunities for local residents.”
Sewage pipe caps under the pier went missing five times during December and the structure has been the victim of vandalism.
Ramboll worked alongside the project’s architect dRMM to rebuild the now 146-year-old pier after the 2010 fire.
Having been rebuilt, the pier won the Royal Institute of British Architects Stirling Prize for the UK’s best new building.
As well as almost being devastated by fire, the pier, which has hosted performances by the Rolling Stones and Pink Floyd, has also been hit by storms in its 146-year history.
Like what you’ve read? To receive New Civil Engineer’s daily and weekly newsletters click here.