Hastings Pier opening gala: a great example of community shares in action
The Community Shares Unit was pleased to attend the Hastings Pier opening gala in June. It has been wonderful to witness the completion of this project; a massive success story for all concerned and inspirational for many future community projects. It was also great to hear Amber Rudd MP, and Stuart McLeod, from the Heritage Lottery Fund mentioning the important role of community shares in their speeches.
Poor maintenance forced the closure of the pier some ten years ago and a major fire in October 2010 nearly destroyed the entire structure.
Following a £14.2m refurbishment and over two years work, Hastings Pier re-opened to the public in Spring 2016. The pier is expected to attract over 300,000 additional visitors a year to the town as well as become a popular venue for locals. Already it has hosted a wide range of events, including the cinema nights under the stars and live music and entertainment.
Much of the funding for the renovation of the pier came from a substantial Heritage Lottery Fund grant whilst a Community Share issue in the pier’s operating company raised over £600,000 from some 3,000 investors, many of whom are local to Hastings.
Find out more about Hastings Pier on their website - http://hastingspier.org.uk/