Richard Wiltshire researches Victorian leisure piers
Posted on 15/07/2013
Richard Wiltshire reviewing documents with Pat Ashley, a volunteer with the Friends of the Old Pier Society at Birnbeck
Victorian leisure piers were the focus of a research trip in late June/early July by senior members of the Japan Pier and Harbour Association, undertaken in cooperation with the National Piers Society and jointly led by Dr Richard Wiltshire, Admissions Tutor for the MA/MSc Tourism Environment and Development at King's and Professor Satoshi Inoue of the National Graduate Institute for Policy Studies in Tokyo. Piers visited included Eastbourne, Sandown, the three piers (and tower) at Blackpool, Cromer and Southend. At Weston-super-Mare the delegation were exposed to the extremes of the piers story - the sad derelection of Birnbeck Pier and the ultra-modern transformation of the Grand Pier following the disastrous fire of 2008. A report on the trip will be published next year, and a Japan Piers Research Association is planned, to help underpin growing interest in making additional use of tsunami-resistant coastal infrastructure for recreational purposes.