Grand Pier opening date revealed
PUBLISHED: 16:19 05 October 2010
SOME 816 days after its pavilion was destroyed by fire, Weston's dazzling new Grand Pier will be handed to its owners on October 22 - and it could be open to the public just 24 hours later.
Weston has looked on with a mixture of anticipation and anxiety as brother and sister duo Kerry and Michelle Michael have battled to come good on their promise of delivering ‘the best pier in the world’.
And after a number of delays and setbacks, the Mercury can today reveal the £51million landmark will reopen in time for the half term holidays later this month.
Kerry is due to accept the keys to the attraction from contractors Sisk on October 22, and aims to open doors to a new generation of pier-goers the following day – and he couldn’t be more excited.
Kerry told the Mercury: “It has been a long road, and it’s had its ups and downs.
“Some days have seemed very difficult and it felt like we would never get to the end of the process.
“But looking at the finished product, it’s fantastic. We hope that when everyone sees it, they will share our enthusiasm for it.”
Ride installation is now ’95 per cent complete’, and deliveries of furniture and gaming machines will take place every day over the next two weeks.
Frantic work will take place onsite over the next few weeks to finish kitting out the new pavilion, and all aspects of the attraction will be opened together.
This means weddings and events scheduled from October 23 onwards will go ahead as planned.
Even a previously-reported problem with the decking is presenting no further hold-up, although it will be replaced in the New Year.
Kerry continued: “Everything will be opened 100 per cent, and we will be virtually chasing the builders out of the building.
“Have we built the best pier in the world? I believe so. If anybody thinks differently, they are welcome to point me in the right direction.
“It really is a special building, and we hope it’s going to be here for people to enjoy for many years to come.”