WESTON'S past was discussed by a celebrated local historian on a radio programme transmitted from the See Monster art exhibition last week. 

Town and district councillor John Crockford-Hawley took to the airwaves to explore the town's story and chew over questions of legacy and revival from the Tropicana's media studio on Friday, September 30. 

BBC Radio Bristol presenter Steve Yabsley quizzed the council's longest-serving member on See Monster, Birnbeck Pier and the former lido which now hosts a decommissioned rig.

"Weston became a fashionable Georgian resort before the railways since Bath, at the time, was dreadfully filthy and full of horse manure. People came to Weston for the fresh air," he said.

"Then coal workers from Bedminster traveled down on the railways for day trips, though their riff-raff was noted by the magistrate."

On the dilapidation of Birnbeck Pier, he said: "It's a pity Birnbeck's purpose has long since gone.

"I remember, as a 13-year-old, mum would make my sandwiches and then off I'd go with friends boating on a paddle steamer for the day. We'd come home after about 12 hours - it was great fun."

A media suite now occupies a space at the Tropicana to discuss harnessing the power of the weather. 

BBC Bristol will regularly broadcast from the site until See Monster closes in early November. 

Cllr Crockford-Hawley was reluctant to ascribe a volume of positive qualities to See Monster and questioned its place on the bookshelf of Weston's yesteryear, but said: "It's certainly interesting, and is a fascinating bit of redundant structure conversion.

"The brilliant thing about it all is the view you get from the top; once it's gone we will never witness those views again."