Pledge given to repair Gorleston pier

THE boss of EastPort UK has given a reassurance that Gorleston’s weather-ravaged pier will be repaired as quickly as possible.

Fears were raised in The Mercury last week that the pier might be closed to the public because of the growing number of surface cracks and holes.

Local residents who regularly use the pier noticed that harbour staff had fenced off damaged areas and put up railings and were concerned it might be barred completely in the same way as the pier car park was controversially closed two years ago.

However, EastPort chief executive Eddie Freeman said: “We have plans to go and inspect the pier again later this week.

“It has only been the severe weather in December that has caused the problems, in the same way as it has raised surfaces on roads all around the county.

“We need to determine how best to tackle it and then we will effect repairs as soon as it has dried out.”

Local historian Dennis Durrant, who launched a petition campaign for the car park to be brought back into use, said the pier’s condition was the worst he had known it.

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He said: “The pier is becoming an eyesore when it should be one of the town’s prime assets. It is a prominent feature in a conservation area so something should be done to maintain its appearance.

“Gorleston has become an increasingly popular place to visit in the last decade. Shops and businesses complain people keep driving round and round in the summer because they cannot find anywhere to park.”

Mr Durrant said there was no response to his Freedom of Information request several years ago asking the borough council to reveal if the pier had serious structural problems.