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Hastings Pier restoration plans move a step closer
A pier could rise from the ashes after campaigners were given approval to seize it from its owners.
The Government has confirmed the compulsory purchase order of Hastings Pier from Panamanian owners Ravenclaw can go ahead.
This gives Hastings Borough Council and the Hastings Pier and White Rock Trust the green light to go ahead with the purchase of the pier as soon as funding is in place.
Statutory notices will now be served with a six week challenge period.
Council Leader Jeremy Birch said: “This is excellent news and a major step forward in returning Hastings Pier to its rightful place as a major attraction on our seafront.
“I know that a huge amount of work has gone into getting this result, and I would like to thank everyone involved, especially, of course, the Hastings Pier and White Rock Trust.”
The pier was 95% destroyed in a fire in 2010.
Artist impressions to bring it back into use have been drawn up which would cost £13 million to complete.
Among the improvements would be a restaurant built in the Western Pavilion – the only surviving building on the pier.
Jess Steele, one of the founding trustees, said: “This is brilliant and a real cause for celebration. Today is a very important day in the history of Hastings Pier.
“We know that there is still a lot of hard work ahead and we'll need the ongoing support of local people and businesses.
“We are now eagerly awaiting the announcement from the Heritage Lottery Fund, expected in November, which we hope will allow us to take ownership of the pier and get on with bringing it back to life.”