Hampshire & Isle of Wight

Southsea's South Parade Pier 'to partially reopen'

South Parade Pier Image copyright Peter Trimming
Image caption The pier was closed by Portsmouth City Council in 2012 following safety concerns

A Victorian pier shut after being deemed a public danger is to partially reopen next week after a £5m revamp.

The Grade II listed South Parade Pier in Southsea, Hampshire, was shut in 2012 when Portsmouth City Council deemed it at risk of collapse.

Owners South Parade Pier Ltd said work to make the structure safe was completed at the end of last year.

An amusement arcade is expected to open at the front of the pier on Good Friday, the company confirmed.

Image caption South Parade Pier opened in 1879, but was destroyed by fire in 1904 and rebuilt in 1908

South Parade Pier Ltd, which bought the structure in 2014, said it had also agreed terms to open a fish and chip shop in May and a 275-seat restaurant in August, creating 50 new jobs.

The amusement arcade is expected to employ 22 new staff.

It is also hoped a cafe will open in the summer, with further plans for an ice cream parlour, shop, rides, a "showbar", zip wire and chartered boat trips.

South Parade Trust, which previously raised concerns over delays in reopening the pier, welcomed the news.

"Everyone in Portsmouth will be delighted to walk out over the sea again," chairman Leon Reis said.

Image copyright Leon Reis
Image caption A dangerous structure order was served on the pier's previous owners in 2012

Pier owners Tommy Ware said it would bring "much-needed employment opportunities".

A dangerous structure order was served on the previous owners.

A council spokeswoman said this had now been lifted on the section with buildings on it, as well as 15m (49ft) beyond. The remainder is still considered unsafe.

South Parade Pier opened in 1879, but was destroyed by fire in 1904 and rebuilt in 1908.

In 1974 it was again wrecked by fire during the filming of the Ken Russell movie Tommy and part of the superstructure was rebuilt.

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