Eight facts surrounding the Southsea ‘Solent Wheel’ deal

An artist's impression of how the 'Solent Wheel' will look
An artist's impression of how the 'Solent Wheel' will look
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HERE are eight things you may not know about the deal to bring a huge ferris wheel to Portsmouth seafront.

Clarence Pier has now been given permission to set up the ‘Solent Wheel’ attraction after paying Italian firm Technical Park £750,000 to create it in time for the 2016 Easter season.

Here are some facts about the background of the proposal.

1) A 56-seater Corbiere Spherical ferris wheel once existed in Clarence Pier’s old amusement park until the site was cleared in the 1990s.

2) Plans in the 2000s were submitted for a bigger 180ft big wheel - but they were turned down by Portsmouth councillors in 2007 for being too big. Around 25 letters of objection were submitted to the authority by residents concerned about passengers being able to see into their properties.

3) The family ride has been built in Italy by attractions firm Technical Park, which has set up ferris wheels in 160 places around the world. It is due to arrive at Clarence Pier by next Saturday and be open to the public from the Easter weekend. A statement on Technical Park’s website describes it as a ‘very dynamic company and a serious player in the ride manufacturing industry, exporting rides all over the world and using only certified quality materials’

4) Technical Park builds ferris wheels ranging from 17m to 100m in size.

5) The wheel, which will go near the Golden Horseshoe Arcade and look on to Pier Road, will include a VIP gondola.

6) Prior to planning permission being granted, Clarence Pier bosses said they would have set it up elsewhere if the plans were refused.

7) The plans didn’t need to go before a planning committee as no objections were raised by the local community. Planning officers were given delegated authority to decide whether to grant approval.

8) Nearby South Parade Pier also wants to build a ferris wheel, potentially in time for this summer’s America’s Cup World Series in Portsmouth.