A SURVEY of structural repair work was set to begin on South Parade Pier today.
A consortium of business owners which hopes to take over the derelict Southsea attraction have commissioned the work.
The group, whose identity remains a mystery, wants to get an idea of how much it needs to fork out for repairs before taking over.
As reported, contracts have been exchanged with current owners Fred Nash and Dawn Randall, but nothing has been signed.
Bernie Cooper, acting on behalf of the consortium, said: ‘We can’t fix anything until we know what needs doing.
‘We need to find out what needs doing to make sure the pier can be made safe.
‘We are liaising with the council to try and sort this out as soon as we can.
‘This has to be done.’
Mr Cooper said the survey work will take ‘as long as it takes’.
He also refused to reveal the names of the prospective owners.
Meanwhile, a petition created by South Parade Trust which calls for the council to order repairs to be carried out on the pier has attracted almost 6,500 signatures.