Claremont fire road closures having ‘negative effect’ on Eastbourne, says pier owner

The owner of Eastbourne Pier says the Claremont fire road closures have had a negative effect on footfall to the seafront landmark.

Wednesday, 4th December 2019, 1:17 pm
Updated Wednesday, 4th December 2019, 1:51 pm

Abid Gulzar says he is pleased the pier has reopened after being closed ever since the devastating fire on November 22.

It was previously blocked off for access purposes by the council and emergency services to the Claremont Hotel in Grand Parade.

Road closures around the Claremont Hotel (Photo by Jon Rigby)
Road closures around the Claremont Hotel (Photo by Jon Rigby)

Mr Gulzar said, “People can now walk along the seafront so there is access to the pier. But of course the biggest concern is that the road around the whole area remains closed.

“We understand why that has to be the case but naturally it has a negative effect on footfall.

“For elderly people and those in wheelchairs especially, there is no parking allowed nearby the pier and other businesses.”

Mr Gulzar said staff are on site, including in the tea rooms and fish and chip shop.

Abid Gulzar the owner of Eastbourne pier (Pic by Jon Rigby)

But he said, “But everyone remains concerned. There’s no getting away from the fact we have two major problems at the moment.

“First, the road by the pier and the Claremont is closed, and I imagine could be for a very long time.

“Second, we have all the works going on in the town centre, which I am sure will be good in the long run, but people are pretty fed up with all the upheaval there too.”

East Sussex Highways announced today (Wednesday) that Grand Parade remains closed as the area is still unsafe following the fire.

The Claremont fire from afar. Photo by Steve Lee

It said on Twitter, “There are long delays in the area so please avoid if you can. We will give you any further information when we have it.”

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