Months after closure, still no movement at South Parade Pier

South Parade Pier, Southsea  Picture: Paul Jacobs (122983-7)
South Parade Pier, Southsea Picture: Paul Jacobs (122983-7)

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CAMPAIGNERS are frustrated about the length of time it is taking to sort out problems at South Parade Pier.

The back section has been closed off since October last year for safety reasons.

Since then there’s been no sign of it reopening.

Instead work has been done to improve the front – with the owners Fred Nash and Dawn Randall refurbishing the ice cream shop and installing new security shutters.

They wanted to move the bar from the back to the front but decided to pull the plans.

Councillor Luke Stubbs, who represents Eastney and Craneswater ward, said it felt like the back of the pier had been forgotten about.

‘It’s hugely disappointing that the pier has been closed for all this time and there is no movement on it,’ he said.

‘Will it be open this time next year? I doubt it. Everyone is frustrated about it.

‘Combined with Harry Redknapp’s land, it is bringing Southsea down at the moment.’

Leon Reis, chairman of The People’s Pier, will talk more about the situation at East Southsea Neighbourhood Forum’s meeting at The Royal Beach Hotel on Thursday. It starts at 7.30pm.

Hampshire’s Police and Crime Commissioner Simon Hayes and city council leader Gerald Vernon-Jackson are due to attend.

Mr Reis said: ‘It’s very frustrating. It would be acceptable if they were working on it, but all we get are promises.

‘They’re doing work at the front of the pier, and that is nothing to do with structural safety.’

Mr Nash said there are plans to refurbish all of the pier. ‘We are repairing the whole pier and doing it in three stages,’ he said.

‘The front is being done now. The second stage is the back and then the third is the open part at the back. We have been speaking to the council about plans.

‘We do not want to sell it.’

The two white elephants which tarnish our seafront: Read The News’ view on this story here