May 25 2013 Latest news:
Richard Cornwell, Felixstowe editor
Friday, October 12, 2012
DAYTRIPPERS, holidaymakers and residents could be enjoying the attractions on Felixstowe’s new multi-million pound pier by summer after next, it was revealed today.
"The aim is be open for business by the end of June or middle of July 2014 so that we catch the main part of the summer, the six-week school holiday."
Owners Pier Amusements Ltd said demolition of the marine structure of the current pier – the part sticking out over the sea – would start early next year and work on the new leisure complex in the autumn.
Suffolk Coastal councillors unanimously gave the go-ahead for the project, praising its striking design and saying it would create a new landmark for the resort.
Operations director for Pier Amusements, Andrew Green said: “It’s great news – we are very pleased.
“The real work starts now. We have a multitude of plans to look at and finalise, tenders to go out and contractors to be appointed.
“The aim is be open for business by the end of June or middle of July 2014 so that we catch the main part of the summer, the six-week school holiday.”
Planning consultant Haydn Evans said the current pier arcade next to the prom would close in September next year to allow work on the new pier building.
It would be a “very challenging” time-scale but some of the marine work and the demolition of the old pier could take place ahead of this.
Planning case officer Michaelle Coupe told Suffolk Coastal’s south area development control sub committee that the new pier would be a substantial investment and a catalyst for the regeneration of the resort’s Pier Bight area, bringing more visitors and extra trade, and encouraging other businesses and attractions to upgrade their facilities.
“The proposals will mean the removal of an historic asset but it will be replaced with a new landmark feature that will enhance the conservation area and enhance the town’s historic role as a seaside resort,” she said.
Councillor Jan Garfield, deputy mayor of Felixstowe, said: “This is a most wonderful opportunity for Felixstowe. For years and years, visitors have been saying, ‘What on earth are you going to do about that dreadful pier?’ It’s been an eyesore.
“The new pier will be an excellent asset.”
Councillor Doreen Savage said the project was top of everyone’s wish list and “a dream come true”, while councillor Andy Smith described it as “fantastic news”.