AMBITIOUS plans to regenerate South Parade Pier have been welcomed.
The four-man consortium to have bought the pier have unveiled their grand plan to save the attraction – and insist they have the wealth to make it a reality.
Leon Reis, chairman of South Parade Pier Trust, said: ‘If they can get the pier deck open and safe for people to walk on by the end of the year or sooner then Tommy Ware will have done a great job.
‘It’s something the community have been wanting.
‘If they can get the boat deck back in operation – even to a limited extent – by the America’s Cup trial that will also be a phenomenal result.
‘This now makes it a very good time for Tommy Ware to start talking to the public.
‘I’m delighted he spoke to The News at least and it’s about time he started talking to the public directly.’
Mr Reis added he would invite Mr Ware Snr to speak at the next East Southsea Neighbourhood Forum.
The community trust, which wanted to buy the pier, is working with architecture students and want the public’s input at the Royal Beach Hotel on February 21.
Portsmouth City Council leader, Councillor Donna Jones, said the pier is a complex structure and work to get it ready is two-fold; first with repairs to the steelwork and secondly work then focusing on the future use of the pier as an attraction.
Cllr Jones: ‘They are thinking outside the box with the mini-London eye and pods.
‘Everyone in Portsmouth is behind the new owners, they’re willing them to get the job done. I’m right behind them.’