Thousands expected as stage set for South Parade Pier re-opening

IT WILL be a historic day for Portsmouth and one that many will never forget.

Thursday, 13th April 2017, 6:00 am
Updated Tuesday, 9th May 2017, 6:50 pm
Part of the revamped South Parade Pier Picture: Malcolm Wells (170404-9506)

South Parade Pier re-opens to the public tomorrow and organisers are calling for the city’s residents to head down and show their support.

With live music and refreshments planned across the four-day bank holiday weekend, thousands are expected to descend upon the pier to welcome in a new dawn for the Victorian structure.

The News revealed the opening date last week and Nick Courtney, spokesman for the owners – Tommy Ware Jnr and Tommy Ware Snr – said they have been ‘blown away’ by the response.

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He said: ‘It’s been such an incredible reaction from people across the city and we are so excited for everyone to be able to experience the pier once again.

‘We want people to come down and show their support. It is a landmark weekend for the city as people have been waiting a long time for this day to come.

‘If the weather’s great, then hopefully we could see thousands of people on the pier which would be a fantastic return.’

The reopening comes five years after the shutters were closed on the Grade II-listed structure due to safety fears.

Following the lifting of court restrictions on the 137-year-old building, people are allowed to walk up to just past the former Albert Tavern bar.

The Lord Mayor of Portsmouth, Councillor David Fuller, will get the party started from 10am on Friday.

Music acts are set to perform across the weekend up until 10pm on a stage by the bar.

Drinks, refreshments and food will also be available for guests.

Councillor Linda Symes, cabinet member for culture on Portsmouth City Council said: ‘I think the owners have done a great job and I hope that the people of Portsmouth come and give the pier the support it deserves.’

See book.events/southparadepier for a full list of performers.