I’ve been visiting Hastings for just less than 16 years, and the Pier played a part in many of my trips down, whether it was playing on the machines in the arcades, or just having a walk to blow away the cobwebs. When the Pier burnt down in 2010, I was really sad. Yes, it hadn’t been open for several years, but it was still a fixture on the Hastings skyline, and I didn’t like the sight of the burnt wreckage. I was also disappointed that my tiny Sophie would not have the chance to enjoy the Pier like I had done. I was delighted when it was bought by the Hastings Pier Charity and when fundraising was successful to reopen it we knew we were going to be regular visitors.
It’s now a year since we visited the newly redeveloped Pier and we have been back many, many times since then, and we have taken many people with us. I love the open space, the first time we stood on the end and looked back along the coastline I was struck by how fabulous it looked in the sunshine. On a clear day the reflections off the sea and over to Bexhill and Eastbourne are lovely, and seeing the furnicular railway going up and down the East Hill is great. The beach hut stalls have been painted now, which I also love, and the combination of old and new in the Deck building is a lovely touch. We have also really enjoyed several of the craft and family activities, including felt flower making and snow globes, and we loved seeing the yarn bomb creations as well.
I have recently started taking part in Hastings parkrun, and am excited about the chance to run on the Pier as part of this. Running past it on a sunny Saturday morning (even when there was still frost on the ground!), it makes me smile to see it open and alive again.
There has been so nuch positive coverage in the national press about the Pier, I feel a sense of pride and talk fondly about it, even though I am definitely not a Hastings native. If you are ever in the area, I would (obviously!) recommend it!
You can find out more here, including upcoming events.
The photos below are some of the ones I took during the work to renovate the Pier.