Brighton, England, UK: Brighton Pier

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Brighton Pier
Brighton Pier

If the Royal Pavilion and Museum show the elegant face of Brighton as a hip and vibrant city on the sea, the pier reminds us it’s still an English coastal resort

And that means the usual collection of cheesy fairground rides, amusement arcades and stalls offering everything from fish and chips to tarot card readings.

Town, Postcode, Attraction...

Brighton PierIn fact, according to official national statistics, Brighton Pier is the second most visited leisure facility with over 4.5 million tourists coming to sample the rides and traditional English seaside scene every year. While the rest of Brighton holds itself with a certain pride, dignity and elegance…you can bet the Pier is anything but – it sure is fun though.

A Brief History of the Pier

In 1891, work commenced on a new pier to replace the original Chain Pier. Adorned with filigree arches and a few kiosks, Brighton Pier was opened in grand ceremony on May 20th 1899. By 1901, the pier consisted of a building with minaret corner towers housing dining, smoking and reading rooms and its first concert hall. By 1911, the concert hall had become a theatre attraction. 21 years elapsed before the next major phase saw the addition of a big wheel, heralding an extension to the piers' length and a widening of the promenade. The wars interfered with development and, as with most seaside piers, a section of the middle was removed to discourage enemy landings. Post war euphoria saw business booming and by the Summer of 1946 day sea trips from the pier along the coast prospered until 1960.

In 1984, the pier was destined to be revitalised under new ownership. New innovative features were introduced such as free admission, free deck chairs, new food outlets on the forecourt and a traditional fish & chips restaurant.

You can’t really help but warm to the pier however – particularly on a hot day as you can sunbathe on the adjacent beach, or check out many of the different forms of entertainment held on the pier.

Historically, the pier was built purely as a pleasure point - it certainly has had its moments of trouble however, including almost being destroyed by a storm in 1896.

The pier is located along the main Grand Junction Road – there are also some very prolific hotels opposite if you wish to be located in this region during your stay. The most notable of these are the Royal Albion and Palace Hotel, both of which command premium rates.

The pier, of course, also has some splendid views out to see - and is a real spectacle at night when lit up with a myriad of brightly coloured lights.

The pier also has a family entertainment centre in the pleasure dome -  here are some of the facilities the pier has to offer for those seeking a pleasant day out in Brightons most lovced landmark:

  • The restaurant - serves up quality fish & chips and other tasty tid-bits to eat once you get hungry. There are 250 seats so no-one will get hungry.
  • Arcades - kids and grownups will love the huge section devoted to arcades.
  • Funfair - Everything from roller coasters to bumper cars. Every visit to the pier should include a trip to the funfair where some great views out to sea can also be had.
  • Brighton PierBars - with a choice of two bars, you can enjoy a hot summers day with a beer or two.
  • Side-Stalls - There are multiple stalls selling everything from ornaments, jewelry to tarot card readings.

For more information, visit the Brighton Pier website. If you just want the Pier's opening times, look here.



All material © 2007 Traynor Kitching & Associates