Frustrated pier staff ‘let down’ by Cuerden Leisure


A number of employees who worked on Eastbourne Pier feel they are being let down by owners Cuerden Leisure in the wake of the blaze.

As flames ripped through the Victorian landmark on July 30, staff were left worried about their immediate future without any income. Managers worked hard to relocate employees to other businesses across the town and owners Cuerden Leisure said the staff would be given holiday pay for the time between employment.

However, this has not materialised and with a handful of staff being let go from their temporary jobs following the end of Airbourne, employees are feeling ‘betrayed and frustrated’. An employee of Cuerden Leisure who worked on Eastbourne Pier but does not wish to be named, said, “We were promised holiday pay but come last Friday, we didn’t receive any money whatsoever. We got in touch with the owners and they said they’d changed their mind about the holiday pay because they were going to re-employ us when the pier reopened. They didn’t let us know or give us a choice whether we wanted to go back. We were told we would have temporary jobs until the pier re-opened but some of these were only for Airbourne. I’m going to have to hand in my resignation because I can’t afford to be unemployed without any holiday pay until the pier reopens, whenever that is. We all just feel a bit betrayed by the owners.”

A spokesperson for Cuerden Leisure said, “Since the fire, we have done our utmost to work with all staff members to ensure they find alternative employment while the pier is closed and to assist with the financial implications of an incident like this. We have had no contact from any member of the team to say they need further work.

“All staff members have received a letter and they have been kept informed via a staff meeting, ensuring that their needs are listened to and met where possible. Benefit claim details and liaison with the office that is handling the benevolent fund has also been clearly handled by regular communication between the teams.”