Mumbles Pier taking shape
THE new-look Mumbles Pier is rising steadily above the waves and is on course for an end-of-year completion date.
Standing in Swansea Bay since Victorian times, the cast iron structure had begun to show signs of its age and was said to be in danger of disappearing beneath the waves unless given a radical makeover.
Fortunately its owners, Ameco, came up with a plan to work with the RNLI to raise the anticipated £12.5 million needed in order to complete the work, by part-funding the project with proceeds raised from land sales for waterfront apartments and a headland development.
The restored pier will also incorporate a new boathouse capable of launching the RNLI's Tamar class lifeboat as part of the redevelopment.
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So far the prefabricated steel spans have been shipped in by barge and slotted into place by contractors using sea-going cranes.
Pier owner John Bollom said that he thought this latest stage of the work would give people a better idea of how the finished structure would appear.
He said: "The idea from the outset was to employ modern materials in a design that evoked the pier's Victorian heritage.
"I might be biased, but I think we've achieved that aim and I hope that people will agree as we get closer to seeing the finished package."
Acknowledged as the largest privately-funded heritage project in Wales, work to rebuild the 155-year-old structure is scheduled to be completed by the end of the year. When plans were unveiled for the project it caused a split reaction among the public.
Mumbles resident Cliff Guard, aged 90, said: "I'm a traditionalist like most people of my age, and I liked the old pier, if it turns out okay then that's a good thing, but a lot of people in Mumbles were against the development of the headland."