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Sunday, 23 October 2011

It's the end of the pier....

As November 5th approaches, there is one particular bonfire night that has stayed in my memory for a very
long time.

I had been to visit friends in North Fylde and as we crossed the border from Blackpool to St Annes, a red glow lit up the horizon, like a magnificent  sunset as far as the eye could see.

'The Corporation have gone to a lot of trouble tonight,' I remarked to the taxi driver sleepily.'That's the biggest firework display I've ever seen...'

'I don't think  Guy Fawkes has got anything to do with it, Miss,' he replied. 'That's one heck of a big blaze.'

I opened my eyes wide.  This was 1974 and St Annes Pier was on fire. The architecturally-acclaimed Moorish Pavilion  was completely destroyed whilst the fire  caused serious damage to the floral hall, jetty and some of the vital substructure that had been in place since 1885.  All that could be seen the following day at the end of the pier was blackened ruins.

Today, the pier's length is reduced to 182m (600 ft) but  is still a 21st century attraction  to people from all over the country.

Looking back, it's a good job I wasn't on duty that night - I'd have missed the story of the decade.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Who says drink doesnt colour your vision! I remember it too, sad :(