Eastbourne: Pier To Reopen Next Week

19 September 2014, 12:54 | Updated: 19 September 2014, 12:56

Part of fire-hit Eastbourne Pier will reopen next weekend, less than two months after a blaze destroyed sections of it, council chiefs have announced.

Walkways have been constructed from the front of the 144-year-old, Grade II*-listed attraction, enabling visitors on to part of it.

They will be able to access the two-thirds of the 1,000ft-long pier that were not destroyed, including the shops, cafe, fishing platform and nightclub.

Eastbourne Borough Council said traders will begin to move back into their shops and a family fun day will be held to mark its partial reopening next Saturday.

The fire on July 30 left the dome-shaped amusement arcade near the privately owned pier's entrance a scorched shell. Everyone escaped unharmed.

It was initially suspected that an electrical fault could have caused the blaze, but Sussex Police are now treating it as "suspicious''. No arrests have been made.

In the aftermath, Prime Minister David Cameron and Chancellor George Osborne visited to see the damage as Downing Street pledged up to £2 million to help Eastbourne's tourism industry recover from the pier's loss.