Essex

Southend Pier hit by barge in high winds

Southend Pier
Image caption The structure is over a mile long

The end of Southend Pier has been closed after it was struck by a barge.

The Essex attraction was hit by the vessel which had been blown underneath it by high winds, causing damage to a pylon and part of the decking.

The boat was being used to carry out work at the far end of the 1.3-mile (2.16km) pier.

A spokesperson at Southend Borough Council said investigations into the extent of the damage had begun but the pier was "not about to fall down".

A spokesperson said: "It has not damaged the integrity of the pier structure itself but there are some repairs that need to be done."

Damage assessment

The pier train has also been shut until further notice.

Conservative councillor for culture and tourism, Derek Jarvis, said: "I've seen a couple of photographs and there is some damage there.

"We need to assess that and later in the day we will make a fuller statement when we can get the results of that assessment."

The barge had been moored to the western side of the pier, where it was being used as part of fire protection work on the pier's pipes.

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