After many years of planning and consultations with local groups, the management of Southend Pier have announced plans to become THE longest pier in the world – FULL STOP!
Archibald Folly, head of the Extend Southend Pier Consortium, sat down for an EXCLUSIVE interview with a reporter from the Southend News Network to explain the plans. He said, ‘Southend On Sea deserves to have a pier that is longer than any other pier in the world, pleasure or otherwise. Therefore, we are delighted to announce that we are now in the final stages of getting approval for our plans to increase the length of Southend Pier to five miles – beating some irrelevant little jetty in Mexico by a whole mile.’
When we pressed Mr Folly for further details, he was happy to oblige. He continued, ‘That particular section of the Thames is one of the busiest shipping lanes in the world, and so we have taken this into account. Instead of extending the pier towards Kent, the new section will be built from the existing pier head on Southend Seafront to Greggs in Rochford town centre, and this distance will guarantee our place in the record books. Our research shows that almost three million people decide to not visit the pier every year because of the ‘longest pleasure pier’ thing.’
One of the benefits of the plans will be that the pier will run directly through London Southend Airport en route, and an airport insider hopes that this will stop the trend of tourists landing at Southend and staring around aimlessly trying to spot Big Ben. He said, ‘This pier extension is excellent news for both the airport and the town, and as an added bonus the trains will be significantly better than the existing rolling stock that calls at London Southend.’
However, local anglers are concerned that the extended section of the pier will have limited fishing opportunities. Rod Tickler of the Southend Fishing Society feels that an extension over the Thames would be more appropriate. He said, ‘While we will be able to catch the occasional shopping trolley and used condom from the section that crosses the Rochford Reservoir, this is bad news for our hobby.’
In a late development, the Southend News Network can also reveal that a trial has been carried out to launch an RNLI lifeboat at the proposed location where the pier will end in Rochford Square – it didn’t work.
LIKE SOUTHEND NEWS NETWORK FOR THE LATEST ‘NEWS’ HEADLINES
Popular on Southend News Network