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Deal Pier to get makeover

By Eleanor Perkins

Work to spruce up one of a Kent town's most treasured landmarks has been announced as pictures have emerged of its poor state.

Deal Pier – the town's third – was opened nearly 60 years ago on November 19, 1957 by the Duke of Edinburgh, but recent neglect has left the tourist attraction looking shabby and dangerous.

Cllr Trevor Bond was alerted to the wear and tear by residents who complained of corroded posts, rusty hand rails and a protruding bolt from a removed seat.

Several parts of the pier are suffering from various degrees of corrosion

The town, district and county councillor informed the district council who he says where very swift to act and a series of improvement works has now been outlined.

Cllr Bond said: “I was horrified when I walked down there.

"It had got to the stage where action needed to be taken.

A badly corroded concrete post with ironwork support exposed

"It’s a key tourist point for us. Many more people go to the pier than any other attraction in the district. We should have it as the flagship attraction.”

Cllr Bond was most concerned about a protruding bolt, which had emerged following the removal of a seat. He alerted officers who had it removed within 24 hours.

Future improvements include new seating, lighting and pier surface.

Steps in a poor state

He said: “Dover District Council are now on the case but we shouldn’t have let it get to this stage.

"They’ve started work to fix things and they’ve given me a schedule of upgrading that I hope will be complete by summer next year.

“I’m hoping at the end of this we’re going to have a first class pier.”

Cllr Trevor Bond says this corroded hand rail is a danger to the public

A DDC spokesman said: “We continue to review and monitor maintenance issues on the pier, and make any urgent repairs as necessary.

"This has included recent work to remove a protruding bolt.

A cracked pillar

“Provision has been made in the medium term capital plan for the pier stem to be refurbished.

"Although we are at an early stage, this should include new seating, new lighting, a new pier surface and repairs to the concrete structure.

The protruding bolt where a seat has been removed

“It is anticipated that work should commence during the spring of 2018.

Despite its problems, the structure remains a popular subject for photographers, as captured here by Tony Friend

“An initial survey has identified that some concrete repairs are required in the shorter term and we are seeking specialist advice and prices to enable these repairs to be made before the onset of winter.”

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