Seaside piers - inspection and rehabilitation (P2942)

The announcement in March this year of the sale of Llandudno pier, along with Blackpool South and Central piers is a reminder of the social, economic and heritage importance of these structures, and the fact that many can provide a commercial return on owners’ investments.

However, of the 100 or so piers that existed at the turn of the last century, less than half now survive. Many are operated on limited budgets as charitable trusts and/or by volunteers. Others, while bringing visitors and trade to an area, are struggling to generate the income to maintain the structure and enhance its facilities.

Figure 1: Mumbles Pier, Swansea. Photo © Amusement Equipment Co. Ltd

Following a successful workshop in 2014, CIRIA, in consultation with English Heritage, pier owners and their structural and maintenance supply chains, has developed a proposal for new guidance on the approaches to maintaining and rehabilitating such structures.

Drawing on the experience of a range of experts and stakeholders, the guide will help identify good practice and help owners adopt cost-effective inspection, maintenance and rehabilitation procedures.

The CIRIA guide will focus on the supporting structure of the pier on whose integrity the “income-earning” superstructure – which can include funfairs, entertainment facilities, lifeboat stations and even rail and tramways – are dependent.

If you have experience of:
  • undertaking or commissioning inspection, maintenance or rehabilitation of piers
  • providing specialist services associated with the providing materials for the repair of historic structures
  • applying for funding for restoration work – whether from national grant bodies or from local organisations
and would be interested in contributing to the CIRIA guide, please contact Owen Jenkins.


Further information

For more information contact Owen Jenkins at CIRIA on 0207 549 3300.

Further reading
A workshop which was held on 1 April 2014 in London confirmed the need for guidance on the management of seaside piers, download the briefing.