Better than its peers

The planned Victoria Pier area that never came to fruition.
The planned Victoria Pier area that never came to fruition.
A little fuzzy perhaps but here we see Portsdown Hill Road where it meets London Road. The George pub would be on the right behind the soldiers. 'Picture: Barry Cox Collection

NOSTALGIA: PoWs forced to cut height of Portsdown Hill

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In 1930 the original 1842 Victoria Pier at the Sally Port, Old Portsmouth, was not as we know it now but a derelict wooden construction out of keeping with the area.

The council decided to do something to restore it to its former glory and build a new one. It was to have fishing platforms, a pavilion, saloons, a concert stage, waiting and refreshment rooms.

In addition there was to be a bazaar, shops and kiosks plus public toilets. Concerts, brass bands and dancing were all planned to make Victoria Pier equal to if not better than Clarence and South Parade piers.

After dredging there was to be a public swimming area within a circle of floats to protect bathers from passing ships. A slipway was also going to be built.

To do this the council was allowed to borrow £10,000 to be repaid over 30 years. But apart from the concrete pier nothing else came to fruition and the area remains quiet, ideal for a stroll or swim from the beach between the pier and the Round Tower.