Construction on Hastings Pier started on 18th December 1869. It was opened by the Earl of Granville, Lord Warden of the Cinque Ports amid great ceremony on Monday, 5th August 1872, the country's first ever Bank Holiday. Designed by the famous engineer Eugenius Birch, at a cost of £23,250, the original pier was modelled on Brighton West Pier.
This picture was taken from the St Leonards Promenade on a very blustery day.
An oriental style pavilion, capable of seating 2000 people, was constructed at the seaward end. The pier was 910ft (275m) long and varied in width from 45ft (13.6m) to 190ft (57.5m). On the approach to the pavilion, a flight of steps either side of the building led down to the landing stages, each 200ft (60.6m) long by 8ft (2.4m) wide. In 1885 a further landing stage was built at a cost of £2,000.
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Photographs © Mark Collins 2006
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