£12k grant to help restore Birnbeck

PUBLISHED: 10:00 24 March 2016

Birnbeck Pier. Photo by Jeremy Long.

Birnbeck Pier. Photo by Jeremy Long.

Jeremy Long \ JCL Photography

Campaigners battling to save Weston-super-Mare's derelict Birnbeck Pier from collapse say they are delighted after they were chosen to receive a £12,000 grant courtesy of a national supermarket chain's competition.

The Birnbeck Regeneration Trust, which is working with the pier’s owners CNM Estates to restore the dilapidated structure, was picked as the grant recipient after Tesco shoppers voted for the charity in the supermarket’s Bags Of Help scheme.

The project uses money raised through Tesco’s 5p carrier bag charge to improve green space in communities across the country.

It saw the trust go head-to-head with two other community organisations – Kingshill Church School in Nailsea and the Groundwork South Project – earlier this month to win either £12,000, £10,000 or £8,000, and shoppers at the store’s Weston town centre branch, in Station Road, voted for the trust to win the top prize.

The trust’s project director Richie Griffin said the money would be used to fence the coast path to the north of the pier, following works to clear the path which were carried out by Lynch Plant Hire at the end of last year.

Mr Griffin said: “The trust would like to thank everyone in North Somerset who kindly voted for them to take first place in the Tesco Bags Of Help public vote, meaning we have been awarded the £12,000 grant.

“This award will go towards providing fencing along the coast path which runs near Birnbeck Pier, so we can reopen (the path) and allow the public to enjoy a new fantastic view of the old lady and out across the Bristol Channel, which has not been seen for more than 20 years.

“We cannot thank the public, Tesco and the Groundwork South team enough.

“They have all played their part in helping us get this project moving.

“Without Lynch Plant Hire donating machines and manpower to start the ball rolling in 2015 by clearing the path and allowing us to see the task ahead, we would not be ready to progress with this grant.

“We look forward to opening the path in the very near future.”

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