Compulsory purchase order date set for Hastings Pier

Hastings Pier after the fire
Image caption Hastings Borough Council said Ravenclaw had failed to face its responsibilities

A compulsory purchase order will be issued to the owner of Hastings Pier after it failed to meet a deadline to start repair work.

The Victorian pier was almost destroyed in an arson attack in October 2010.

Since the fire the owner of the pier, Panamanian-based company Ravenclaw, has failed to respond to approaches by Hastings Borough Council.

Councillor Peter Chowney, lead member for regeneration, said the order would be issued on 19 March.

The company was served a repairs notice at the end of November, which paved the way for the compulsory purchase.

Mr Chowney said: "We have given Ravenclaw every chance to put things right and yet again they have failed to face their responsibilities.

"That being the case we will issue a compulsory purchase order on the week beginning 19 March."

He said the council would work with the Hastings Pier and White Rock Trust, which aims to refurbish the pier.

Up to 95% of the pier, which had been closed since 2006, was damaged in the arson attack.

Two men, then aged 18 and 19, were arrested shortly afterwards but the Crown Prosecution Service announced in April that there was not enough evidence to bring charges.

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