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Last Updated: Monday, 6 August 2007, 05:50 GMT 06:50 UK
Campaign to restore pier pavilion
The pavilion was first opened in 1929 and gives the pier a distinctive entrance.

A project to restore Penarth Pier's pavilion, one of south Wales' seafront landmarks, is being launched later at the Senedd in Cardiff Bay.

Penarth Arts and Crafts Limited (PACL) wants to hear from the public on the future of the 1929 structure.

PACL's Maggie Knight said it was a "people's palace" but currently a "shadow of its former self".

It is hoped the pavilion could be home to conferences, art exhibitions, a creche and even house a sea restaurant.

PACL said the pavilion, with its extraordinary barrel-vaulted cement interior, had been little used in recent years.

It said the building required "substantial investment" to properly restore it for the long term.

However, owners, the Vale of Glamorgan Council recently completed more thanr 80,000 of painting and concrete repairs.

People's palace

In the 1990s the council with Heritage Lottery Fund funding carried out 1m repairs to the pier and recently carried out external works to the pavilion.

Now PACL has won a Heritage Lottery Fund 50,000 grant for the planning stage of the restoration project.

Maggie Knight said: What needs to be done is a real rethink inside.

Penarth Pier pavilion
Campaigners want the restorration to include an environmental theme

"It's only small but you could do a fantastic interior with new ideas, perhaps even drawing in the environmental themes that we would like to do connected with the water and indeed the built environment."

Ms Knight said the restoration project has "to listen to what the public want" and the group is doing things like reminiscence days, looking at archives, and setting up working parties to get people involved.

"I believe now when people are trying to avoid Cannes or any of the hotter (places) we are coming again to our Wales seaside and so this is the sort of thing that would kick-start that whole front," she added.

Vale council leader Margaret Alexander said: "We look forward to working in partnership with PACL to restore the Pier Pavilion and bring it back to beneficial use"

The PACL application includes proposals to link to the Penarth front, public transport to the esplanade and disabled access.

Development of an improved water transport infrastructure was also included in the bid.


SEE ALSO
Birds prevent pavilion demolition
29 Jun 06 |  Hereford/Worcs
Pier-ing into the future
05 Apr 07 |  Magazine

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