Cromer Pier in Norfolk

Piers are a serious business in the United Kingdom, particularly in England; not all have survived storms and fires, but many are still aroun. This includes the Cromer’s pier in Norfolk, which is said to be the oldest in England.

There was a pier at Cromer in 1391, and possibly even earlier, though it was a very simple version at the time, more like a simple jetty, and definitely not bingo halls and helter skelters!In a letter to the people of Cromer, Queen Elizabeth I granted the export rights to wheat, barley, and malt, with the proceeds to be used for the upkeep and well-being of the pier and the city of Cromer.

Obviously, the pier was rebuilt many times and in the 1800s Cromer built a 45-meter-long wrought-iron pier to compete with the other seaside resorts.  That pier was destroyed by a storm 24 years later.

This pier was replaced by another wooden structure, but this time it was 240 feet long (73 m). This pier quickly became a popular place to stroll. The pier was destroyed in 1897 when it was hit by a coal-carrying ship. Cromer was left without a pier for five years, which was unheard of at the time, when piers were required in all seaside resorts.

The new pier was finished and opened to the public in 1902. It was 450 feet (140 metres) long and costed 17,000 pounds to build. The pier used to be made up of screened-in glass shelters with a show stage at the end. In 1905, the shelters were covered to create a pavilion, and the orchestra stage was later replaced with a stage. This was used to accommodate the latest roller skating craze from 1907.

It was repaired several times, the most recent being in 2012, but the pier was damaged again by a storm in December 2013. Fortunately, it was able to survive thanks to recent repairs, despite the fact that the repair work since has been lengthy and costly.

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