|An important development in the establishment of Boscombe as a seaside resort was the building of the pier. A proposal for the pier was launched in 1884, when it felt that this would improve the attractiveness of Boscombe to visitors.
Tenders for the building of the pier were issued and in September 1888 the contract was awarded for £3,813, and for making the pier approach £938. The pier was 600 feet (180 m) long, and built in spans of 40 feet (12 m) each with a continuous wrought iron girder frame, which carried timber decking 32 feet (9.8 m) wide. The pier head was 120 feet (37 m) long and 38 feet (12 m) wide, with a landing stage on each side, at which excursion steamers could call. At the entrance were two toll houses with turnstiles. It was opened with considerable ceremony on 29 July 1889 by the Duke of Argyll.
During the decade from 1881 to 1891 Boscombe had grown apace, the population increasing from 1,895 to 6,324.
Further developments were made in the 1890s by Archibald Beckett who was responsible for the Salisbury Hotel (now Greens) in 1890, the Royal Arcade in 1892 and the Theatre (now The Opera House) in 1895.
In a brief span of about 35 years, 1866 - 1901, Boscombe had grown from a few cottages with a handful of people to an established seaside resort with a population in the 1901 census of 9,648.
In recent years, the area around Boscombe pier has undergone renovation. The derelict and unsafe building at the end of the pier has been demolished, and replaced by a simple viewing and fishing platform. While the rest of the pier has been restored. To the east of the pier is Europe's first artificial surf reef that was completed in Autumn 2009. The reef was constructed as part of the restoration work that also included the Overstrand buildings.
Since the reopening in 2008 a Friends Association has been established, organizing art exhibitions and live music performances. In 2009 website Nothing To See Here named it Britainís coolest with the National Piers Society voting it Pier of the Year 2010.
Location: Ashmore, England
Category: Buildings: Other
View in Google Earth
View in Google Maps