Eastbourne Pier fire – five year anniversary

Today (Tuesday) marks the fifth anniversary of the blaze which destroyed a third of Eastbourne Pier.

Eastbourne Pier fire SUS-140730-165013001
Eastbourne Pier fire SUS-140730-165013001

An electrical problem – started deliberately according to Sussex Police – sparked the fire which tore through the Blue Room and destroyed a number of shops.

More than 80 firefighters worked throughout the night to tackle the blaze, which allegedly started in wood panelling in the walls of the games arcade.

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After fighting the fire through the night, fire officers eliminated the main hotspots and saved two thirds of the pier with the Blue Room, the main arcade, being the only large building affected.


In the months that followed the landmark was repaired although the Blue Room was never re-built.

During the rebuilding, workman Stephen Penrice fell to his death and following a lengthy investigation by the Health and Safety Executive and police, the company he worked for, MPN North West Ltd, and two men were charged with gross negligence manslaughter.

The seafront venue was owned at the time of the fire by Cuerden Leisure, which sold the pier on to Eastbourne businessman and hotelier Abid Gulzar in October 2015.

Strongboxes containing cash from the burnt out arcade at Eastbourne Pier are cleared away by contractors SUS-140814-142329001
Eastbourne Pier fire SUS-140730-165013001
Eastbourne pier fire SUS-140730-204614001
Eastbourne pier fire SUS-140730-204409001
Eastbourne pier fire SUS-140730-204712001
Eastbourne pier fire SUS-140730-204739001
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Eastbourne Pier one year on from the devastating fire (Pic by Jon Rigby) SUS-150729-140454008