MANY designs have been drawn up since Brighton’s West Pier was all but destroyed in a fire.

But this is perhaps the most outlandish.

Architecture graduate Nicolas Barthomeuf reckons his proposal will bring the Victorian structure into the 21st century.

Mr Barthomeuf, 24, from Strasbourg, France, stayed in Brighton to work for six months during his gap year and started to produce designs for what he thought the West Pier could include if developed in the future.

Mr Barthomeuf designed a pier filled with modern sports facilities, including a 400m running track, a 250m velodrome, a 50m swimming pool filled with seawater and even a concert hall at the end of the structure.

He said: “Three years ago, I decided to have a gap year after my bachelor’s degree in architecture.

“I came to Brighton thanks to a friend who was an Erasmus student at the University of Sussex and he asked me to join him for six months.

“When I came back to France, I started my master’s degree and the idea of a project in Brighton for my diploma started to emerge.

“My teachers just said that if I was to work on Brighton, I should be brave enough and dare to design a new pier.

“First the idea seemed crazy but when I started to dig into the subject and the history of piers, I began to get a clue about what role a new pier could play today.

“I think that the most architectural part of the pier, the concert hall at the very end of it, gets inspiration from Snohetta’s work, which made the opera house in Oslo.”

He believes if his designs were ever brought to life, the West Pier could become “a new landmark, a symbol of regeneration and an acceptance of the past”.

Mr Barthomeuf said: “Brighton Palace Pier is 500m long, which I find convenient for a walk as it is sufficient to have a good view of the city, but not too long for a short walk. It was settled then that my pier would keep these dimensions.

“I wanted it to be a public space, without any housing or integrated shops, but it could become a gathering place, suitable for sports, with a promenade and cultural events.”