Pier owners host Prime Minister

by Nigel Brown Oct 23 2023 0     321
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October 23, 2023

 

The owners of Clacton Pier got the chance to host the Prime Minister on a high-profile fact-finding mission to the town.

Billy and Elliot Ball welcomed the Rt Hon Rishi Sunak to their 152-year-old attraction while he was visiting the resort.

He was in Clacton to learn about opportunities being created by £40 million of Government Levelling Up funding for the area.

The Balls, fifth generation Showmen, were chosen to meet the Prime Minister as business owners and were honoured to greet him.

“It was a day we will always remember and we were able to discuss the importance of the tourism industry and attractions like ours,” said Billy Ball.

“The Prime Minister was very well briefed and was engaged with what was going on at the pier – its expansion and the investment we have made since taking it over.

“He thanked us for what we have done and recognised that tourism is a pivotal industry in towns such as Clacton and needs to be supported.”

Mr Ball added that the Prime Minister recalled when his family lived in Santa Monica and made visits to its pier, as well as trips to other pleasure piers which brought back many happy memories.

The Balls took over Clacton Pier in 2009 and have transformed the attraction, restoring it to its former glory.

The family’s heritage goes back to their great, great grandfather Alfred Ball who travelled the country with various forms of entertainment.

This included the Joywheel, an early type of ride, the New Lyceum Show complete with dancers and music from a fairground organ, his famous Bioscope – an early form of cinema - and a boxing booth.

On Billy and Elliot’s mother’s side are five generations of Show family starting originally with the Codona Brothers, and still operating Codona’s Aberdeen Amusement Park to this day.

Ends

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