See pictures of latest works of new Felixstowe Pier, on schedule for August opening
PUBLISHED: 12:01 06 January 2017
Contractors aim to start bridging the gap between the pier and the prom at Felixstowe this month as work continues apace on a multi-million pound new entertainment centre.
Demolition of the old amusement arcade building after 50 years has left the jetty part of the structure standing alone in the sea, stranded from land but the gap creating new views across the resort’s bay.
These latest photographs of the project show the progress being made on the scheme, which the owners say is on schedule.
The aim is to complete the project ready for opening in early August.
A 250-ton crane is currently placing 66 steel piles deep into the beach to take the frame of the new building, which will include cafe/bar with al fresco dining, bowling, modern food outlets, and a family entertainments centre.
The new pier building, understood to be costing around £3million, will be larger than the old one and include a boardwalk for promenading around the building over the beach and sea.
The part of the pier sticking out over the sea will also remain – though because it is unsafe, people will not be able to walk its length.
A spokesman for the pier project said: “The project has taken a huge amount of planning over the past few years and it will provide a new landmark and attraction for the resort.
“Works are in line with the programme – 37 steel piles are now in place with 29 to go.
“During January, we hope to finish the steel piling and install the first third of the precast deck.”
It is expected that work will also start soon on another major part of the project – to increase the height of the promenade.
The purpose of this will be to provide access for people of all abilities via a direct link from the Pier Bight area in front of the leisure centre. The prom will be raised to be level with the top of the sea wall, which coincidently was the same height as the top of the ramp of the old pier building.
The walkway’s height will gradually rise from near Felixstowe Town Hall to the pier and a similar distance the other side.
When it was opened in 1905 by the Coast Development Corporation, the pier was half a mile in length and one of the longest in the country.
Electric tram cars ran from the pier head – a penny all the way – and steamers berthed at its end to take people to and from other resorts.
During the Second World War, the pier was severed in order to stop Germans landing on its end and then running up its length to invade.
Afterwards, the seaward section which had been cut was not mended and the outer length was demolished.