The best of the season to inspire and admire
UNRIVALLED IN ORNATE BEAUTY
Extending 842ft (257m) into the Bristol Channel on the north Somerset coast, the Victorian Clevedon Pier is the UK’s only Grade I listed pier. Designed by engineers J W Grover and R J Ward, the unique openwork structure uses cast iron and discarded wrought iron rail from Brunel’s broad-gauge South Wales Railway to create slender arched supports for the pier. Approximately 370 tons of ironwork was needed. Each span is curved with radiating struts and arched stanchions. Ornamental lamps on tapering stems were placed over each of the supports. The result is a combination of beauty and utility, akin to the intricacy of a spider’s web. It was originally built in the 1860s and opened in 1869 to receive paddle steamers from Devon and Wales. A toll house to accommodate the pier master was added, designed by Victorian architect Hans Fowler Price, of Weston-super-Mare, in Scottish baronial style, much favoured at the time. Despite standing high above sea level, it has been subjected to storm damage and was temporarily closed in 1970. It is now in the care of the Clevedon Pier and Heritage Trust.