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Last Updated:  Wednesday, 19 February, 2003, 17:35 GMT
Pier restoration 'to be approved'
The collapsed West Pier
Parts of the pier collapsed at the end of December
Salvage work on Brighton's derelict West Pier could start within weeks as councillors are being advised to approve new plans.

The pier has been closed since 1975, but in the last two months it has been badly damaged twice by stormy weather.

If the plans, which have been drawn up by the piers owners West Pier Trust, are approved they hope to start restoration work this spring.

A decision about the plans will be made at a Brighton and Hove City Council meeting next Wednesday.

Lottery funding

When sections of the pier's concert hall first fell into the sea on 30 December, the West Pier Trust re-affirmed its determination to restore the grade one listed building.

After the rear of the ballroom collapsed completely into the sea on 20 January chief executive Geoff Lockwood said prompt action after the first collapse could have prevented the new damage.

Restoration work has been delayed in recent years by opposition to plans drawn up by the trust for a restored and re-opened pier.

Some residents have objected to the amount of related buildings proposed for the seafront as part of the scheme saying they would spoil their views of the Channel.

Listed building

Plans have since been re-drawn and it is the new scheme which will be considered by councillors.

The owners of the nearby Brighton Pier had previously objected to the West Pier getting National Lottery funding.

They said it was unfair for an attraction in competition with another to get a form of state funding, but their claims were rejected by the European Commission.

Next Wednesday's meeting, at which councillors will debate planning permission, listed building consent and conservation area consent, is being specially extended to allow more members of the public to speak - either for or against the scheme.





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SEE ALSO:
Battered pier will be restored
30 Dec 02 |  England
Brighton's West Pier collapses
29 Dec 02 |  England


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