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Can you help regenerate Shotley pier? The community share scheme launches today

PUBLISHED: 17:13 01 June 2017 | UPDATED: 17:29 02 June 2017

The Shotley Heritage Community Benefit Society has launched the Shotley Pier share scheme. Picture: ARCHANT

The Shotley Heritage Community Benefit Society has launched the Shotley Pier share scheme. Picture: ARCHANT

Archant

People in Suffolk are being invited to get behind a community regeneration project pledging to breathe new life into a 122-year-old pier by investing in its future.

An aerial image of the piers in Shotley. Picture: MATT PORTERAn aerial image of the piers in Shotley. Picture: MATT PORTER

Shares offering residents the chance to own part of Shotley’s historic pier are now on sale thanks to the launch of a new share scheme.

Interested parties can, from 4pm today, purchase shares via the initiative’s crowdfunding website or by filling out a share form.

Members of the Shotley Heritage Community Benefit Society are to gather outside the Bristol Arms in Shotley Gate to launch the scheme this afternoon.

Pledges of £39,000 have already been received.

People in Suffolk are being given the chance to buy shares in Shotley PierPeople in Suffolk are being given the chance to buy shares in Shotley Pier

Project leader Sally Chicken said: “People who invest should do so for community reasons, this is not primarily a financial investment, as there will be no dividends.

“We welcome small purchases from £50 to ensure that everyone can take part in this unique community business.”

Built by the Marquis of Bristol for the ferry between Shotley Gate and Harwich, the pier has been used to transport munitions and take sailors from the HMS Ganges training ship.

Plans for its future include kiosks, fishing opportunities and a walkway, which will be restored in Victorian style, looking out over the river Stour.

Investors are being offered the chance to pop the final rivet, take part in a personalised boat trip and take a VIP flight over the pier in return for a minimum contribution of £50.

They have a five-week window of opportunity - until July 14 - to donate the cash.

Pier project founder member Derek Davis said: “This is a fabulous opportunity for the community and other backers from further afield, to take ownership of this Victorian pier, which is steeped in history.

“It is wonderful to see an idea bounced about in the Bristol Arms a couple of years ago, now taken up by villagers supported by the council and moving forward.”

The group plans to bring the pier back to be used by fishermen, sightseers, birdwatchers and for small yachts to berth alongside.

A fishing pontoon may be also be added.

Visit www.crowdfunder.co.uk/shotley-pier from 4pm to purchase a share.

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