Eastbourne Pier fairground plan rejected

The decked area where pier owners wanted to see fairground rides

The decked area where pier owners wanted to see fairground rides

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Plans to put fairground rides on Eastbourne Pier for the summer season have been kicked out by town planners.

At a meeting on Tuesday night members of the town’s planning committee voted against consent for the scheme which would have seen rides installed on the new decked area where the Blue Room stood before it was destroyed by fire last summer.

Pier owners wanted listed building consent for the scheme which they said would be for at least 18 months while plans are drawn up to redevelop the site the Blue Room, destroyed in last July’s blaze, stood on.

Since the fire the burnt out structure of the Blue Room has been removed, the pier structure has been reinforced and decking installed.

Crown Entertainment Centres, which owns the seafront landmark, wanted to put waltzers, dodgems, a carousel, helter skelter, bungee trampolines, tea cup ride, a children’s train ride, arcades and stalls on the decked area.

A pier spokesperson said at the time the company submitted the application the proposals included a variety of rides and stalls commonplace within seaside piers across the country to bring the pier back in to use while discussions continue regarding a replacement building.

Because the pier is a Grade II star listed building, English Heritage was consulted and listed building consent could be given by the council.

But councillors said they were concerned at noise and hours of operation and agreed it would have an adverse impact on the attraction as well as for neighbouring businesses and hotels, many of whom objected to the plans.

The objectors said that the open air rides would cause noise to travel and there would be late night disturbance from people leaving the pier.

English Heritage said the temporary fairground rides would have changed the silhouette of the pier in its long views but felt that the “moderate harm” could be accepted as a short term measure and it did not object to the installation of the rides for a temporary period.

The pier owners have the right to appeal.

It is now nine months since the blaze which destroyed a third of the pier including the Blue Room and small shops. The investigation is still being treated as arson by detectives.

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