Date published: 19th February 2019
An extensive programme of works is currently underway to protect the long term future of North Norfolk District Council-owned Cromer Pier.
A £400,000 project, which is being undertaken during the winter months to keep disruption to an absolute minimum, is being carried out by UK Industrial Services and Reeve Property Restoration as a result of a five-year rolling programme of condition surveys which the Council has commissioned Hemsley Orrell Partnership, a structural, civil & marine engineering consultancy, to undertake.
North Norfolk District Council’s Cabinet approved funding in September 2018 to secure the future of the iconic landmark where improvements are being made to the structural base of the pier and to the roof structure of the theatre.
Work has also been carried out to replace the sewerage system below the decking between the theatre and RNLI boat shed, along with upgrading the fire alarm system which is now linked to the RNLI station. An area of decking between the forecourt and the front of the booking office and Tides Restaurant has already been replaced as part of the Council’s ongoing maintenance programme with further deck replacement works to the immediate front of the bar and to the west of the theatre likely to take place during this current phase of works.
Performers treading the boards in the theatre will be doing so on new ones; the stage floor will be improved before the show season starts. Theatre roof improvements have also been carried out during the late winter months to ensure they are also completed by the first show of the year on Thursday 28 March. Work to strengthen the structure of the pier is expected to be completed by early April.
A further £600,000 will be spent on significant improvement works during autumn 2019 where contractors will replace some of the concrete encasements that protect the steel column supports into the sea bed. This work will require support from divers and the use of underwater cameras.
North Norfolk District Council’s award-winning pier has been the subject of significant investment in recent years, including £1.2m following the storm surge of December 2013. Its widespread appeal attracts tens of thousands of tourists from across the country and further afield every year. It recently featured as the star of the show in the BBC’s Christmas ident, broadcast to millions during December 2018; anecdotally, local businesses have indicated that the instantly recognisable asset has already resulted in an increase in visitors to Cromer.
North Norfolk District Council’s Portfolio Holder for Leisure and ward member for Cromer Town, Cllr. Hilary Cox MBE said: “These ongoing improvements to Cromer Pier show NNDC’s commitment to sustaining the future of this iconic structure, economically benefitting the whole area for tourism and employment.
“Whether you enjoy the shows, catch crabs over the side or just take a gentle stroll around the pier, these significant upgrades will enhance any experience on this award winning asset.”
The Council recently agreed a ten-year partnership with Openwide who run the pier on the Council’s behalf. Coupled with investment in the significant improvement work and an ongoing maintenance programme, the Council is securing the pier’s future and ensuring its universal appeal endures for many years to come.
Last updated: 20th February 2019