Jobs to go

  • 2 November, 2020
  • On the pier


Jobs will be lost at Clacton Pier due to the second lockdown.

While virtually all staff were kept on at the landmark attraction using
the Government’s furlough scheme earlier in the year, tough decisions are
having to be made this time around.

Normally seasonal employees are laid off at this time of year – but due
to the current situation it will include some full-time workers.

Pier Director Billy Ball said it is impossible to continue with existing
staffing levels when the business is not operating.

“The Government and our bank helped us survive the first lockdown, but
we knew we were coming out of it into our busiest time of the year and that we
would be generating income,” he said.

“We are now going into our quietest period and unfortunately the figures
just don’t add up. Despite the benefit of the furlough scheme, there is still a
significant cost to the business in retaining staff such as holiday
entitlement, PAYE and pension payments at a time when there is nothing coming

Mr Ball said that everything is being done to limit the number of

“One minute we were preparing for keeping our rides open at weekends and
looking forward to a busy winter and then that is all gone – and we don’t know
for how long.

“Any business is only as good as its staff and we are very lucky to have
good loyal people who have helped us grow over the years and continually
improve our offering. We really thank them for that, but these are unprecedented
times and call for unprecedented measures.”

Mr Ball added that on the positive side the Pier is keeping its fingers
crossed that it will be able to reopen in time for its magical Christmas Experience.

Preparations for the festive period will continue during lockdown, as
will work on other projects such as installing the new Looping Star Roller
Coaster for next year which is an investment which has already been made.

Mr Ball said it had been a very difficult year for everyone and the Pier
was not exempt.

“It started with changes to our ride deck layout which involved significant
disruption, and this was followed by storm damage in February,” he added.

“The impact of that damage is on-going, and the insurance claim has still
not been settled which is delaying repairs.

“The following month we went into the first lockdown with all its
financial pressures – and now the second lockdown has come as a severe blow to all
businesses. Difficult does not start to cover it!”

Mr Ball thanked all customers who have continued to support the Pier –
despite the various restrictions in place – and hoped that would continue when
the attraction reopens.


Photo by Kevin Jay

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