Sussex

Art Deco Worthing Pier dubbed best in Britain

Worthing Pier bathed in a sunset glow Image copyright Getty Images
Image caption Worthing Pier bathed in a sunset glow

A 19th Century Art Deco pier originally built as a landing stage has been named this year's Pier of the Year.

Worthing Pier, which was built in 1862, was held up as 2019's top pier, having previously come second and third in the competition in the past four years.

A grey and murky morning underneath Worthing Pier Image copyright Getty Images
Image caption A grey and murky morning underneath Worthing Pier

The mayor of Worthing, Paul Baker, said: "It really is a beautiful and iconic landmark.

"It symbolises all that is classic about a traditional pier.

"It's not garish but elegant, you can see a great show there, take tea while enjoying spectacular views, have a nice meal, fish for your supper, or just take an evening stroll."

A bright day at Worthing Image copyright Getty Images
Image caption A bright day at Worthing

The National Piers Society competition compares 55 open piers. Clacton in Essex came second and Clevedon in North Somerset third.

Society chairman Gavin Henderson said: "I am really pleased to give three cheers to Worthing pier for all its historical significance and current glory."

The last time Worthing Pier won the accolade was in 2006.

The illuminated pier glows against a cloudy evening sky Image copyright Getty Images
Image caption The illuminated pier glows against a cloudy evening sky
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Worthing Pier over the years

Worthing Pier in the 1890s Image copyright Worthing Museum & Art Gallery
Image caption Worthing Pier - pictured in the 1890s - was built in 1862
  • 1862 - Pier built.
  • 1889 - Pavilion erected on the pier head - later known as the Southern Pavilion.
  • 1913 - Storm destroyed Southern Pavilion, it was fixed within a year.
  • 1920 - Pier sold to the council.
  • 1926 - Shoreward pavilion opened, Worthing Municipal Orchestra made it home.
  • 1933 - Southern Pavilion destroyed by fire.
  • 1935 - Reopened after £18,000 of repair costs.
  • 1937 - Amusement arcade built.
  • 1939 - Outbreak of the Second World War: entrance pavilion used by troops for games, a canteen and a library.
  • 1946 - Pier reopened to the public. Through the years the Southern Pavilion was used as a model railway museum, a cinema and zoo.
  • 1980s - It became a nightclub.
  • 2005 - Club closed.
  • 2014 - Southern Pavilion renovated into a cafe, performance space and wedding venue.
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The Southern Pavilion at Worthing Pier Image copyright Getty Images
Image caption The Southern Pavilion at Worthing Pier
Worthing Pier at low tide during sunset Image copyright Getty Images
Image caption Worthing Pier at low tide during sunset

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