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Pier unveils details of £4 million development

  • 26 June, 2018
  • Development
  • On the pier

 

 

Clacton Pier today unveiled the first details of its multi-million pound
scheme which will transform the site into one of the premier attractions in
East Anglia.

Preparations are already under way and work has started on the
development which is due to be completed early in 2019.

The Pier’s bank has now given the final go ahead for the finances which
will see around £4million invested.

The aim is to make the Pier a 52-week a year undercover heated facility
and help bring in extra visitors to the Tendring District.

The two main features will be a £500,000 indoor and outdoor adventure
golf course over two levels being built by an American company as well as a
£500,000 children’s play area.

These two facilities alone will take up 30,000 square feet and will be
in a heated area with special landscaping and lighting.

There will also be new dodgems at first floor level; a new food and
drink section; enhancements to the Seaquarium; a large versatile events space
for the winter months and an enlarged amusement arcade.

This is being created on the eastern side of the Pier with panoramic
views out over the new beaches created by Tendring Council and will embrace a
1930s art deco look and feel.

Included in the plans are new external low energy lighting and external
landscaping. 

Director Billy Ball said the all-clear from the bank was the final piece
of the jigsaw.

“We had a scheme on the drawing board but just how far we could take it
depended on what money was available to us,” he said.

“We were always going to make significant improvements but now we can
proceed with Plan A as we have the £4million we were seeking to borrow and pay
back over the next 20 years. The aim is to create the largest multi-use indoor
entertainment centre in the country.

“We have been building our financial reputation for the past nine years
since we took over Clacton Pier and obviously the bank has now backed us in the
best possible way.

“We could never have funded this development ourselves as we are
ploughing almost every penny we take back into the annual repair and
maintenance of what is a very expensive structure to keep up to scratch.” 

Clacton Pier is the largest in Europe at 6.5 acres and Mr Ball said that
every square inch must start to pay its own way to ensure the Pier becomes
sustainable in today’s market.

“This is the biggest single investment in the Pier since it was build
147 years ago and it is about taking the attraction to the next level,” he
added.

“We cannot standstill and have to keep growing and improving the
customer experience while staying true to our traditions and heritage as a
Victorian pier.

“This is also very much about our own commitment to Clacton and Tendring
moving forwards.

“By starting the preparatory work at the end of last season we have not
lost any time while the money has been coming through and means we are in a
good position.

“People will have seen a lot of work taking place over the past few
months – a new transformer has been installed to create the power supply we
will need in the future; the 1930s barrelled roof has been stripped off and
panels taken out on the east side ready for the new attractions and
facilities.”

The Pier has all rides operating this week for half term and will remain
open throughout the development.

The rides will be operating each weekend and every day through the
Easter school holidays and at Whitsun Circus Fantasia will also make a welcome
return following its introduction last year in the Jolly Roger.

 

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