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This profile was last updated on 1/10/12  and contains information from public web pages.


Pier Company

Employment History

  • Undisputed Lord High Priest
    Pier Company
  • Architect
    Pier Company
  • Lord Mayor
17 Total References
Web References
Designed by Eugenius Birch and ..., 10 Jan 2012 [cached]
Designed by Eugenius Birch and commissioned by the Blackpool Pier Company, work commenced on the first of Blackpool's piers in 1862. The North Pier was opened on 21st May 1863 by Mr F Preston, Chairman of the Pier Company, amid much pomp and ceremony.
The Hastings Chronicle, 12 Oct 2011 [cached]
The winner on points was to be the out-of-town Pier and Harbour Company, led by Britain's most prolific and famous pier builder, Eugenius Birch. Born 1818, Birch was a doyen of pier engineers, and had been involved in railway and bridge works in his early life. His first pier was Margate, built 1853-6. By the time of his death in 1884 he had been the engineer of another 13 piers, including Brighton West, Eastbourne and Hastings.
In 1865 Birch and his company produced a new proposal: to separate their two projects, with the pier being at White Rock and the harbour remaining at the Old Town. They also drew up plans for a pier at Warrior Square, to be called the Alexandra Pier, but this was soon dropped.
The secretary of the Pier and Harbour Company was Mr WH Simpson, a solicitor who was involved in several other piers, including Brighton West, of which he said he was the sole promoter. He had lived in the Hastings area since 1839 and said he wanted to benefit the town, but he was seen by the local establishment as an outsider, acting for London business interests. By 1865 he was up against fierce opposition, and he said "there was a great hostility to the plan amongst some members of the Council, because these gentlemen [councillors] wished to carry out a plan of their own".
Simpson's new company, called just the 'Pier Company', was backed by Birch, and with national figures as directors had legal preference over the pier site, yet had little local support.
After two years stalemate and a tight money market, a compromise was reached in the summer of 1869, whereby Simpson effectively abandoned his plans, agreeing to hand over his Pier Company to Howell and friends, on condition they kept Birch as engineer and paid all the costs of creating the act and the company.
Howell first explained the background to the meeting and then Birch outlined his design ideas.
Birch said he had chosen the White Rock site because "the best foundation could be found there" - no rocks, and a thick bed of clay. The working expenses of existing piers - eg, Blackpool, Scarborough and Brighton West - were met by income from refreshment stalls and toy shops on the piers.
Birch had already employed them, including on Brighton West Pier. The contract price was £23,250, and it was sealed on 9 December 1869.
The Pier is Launched
The design of Hastings Pier by the imaginative and highly competent Eugenius Birch was seminal in some ways: it was the first British pier to have a grand pavilion, and the first to have it included as an integral part of the design.
Granville was followed by engineer Eugenius Birch, who tried to explain the long delay by Laidlaw, the contractors, in building the pier.
ABERYSTWYTH, 5 April 2006 [cached]
And this wasn't just any pier, mind ... it was designed by Eugenius Birch, the undisputed Lord High Priest of Piers.
The West Pier at Brighton was ... [cached]
The West Pier at Brighton was built between 1863 and 1866 at a cost of £28000 and was designed and engineered by the most acclaimed pier architect Eugenius Birch.
During the next three years a ..., 19 Nov 2010 [cached]
During the next three years a new pier, designed by Eugenius Birch, was completed. At a cost of £21,600 the new Bournemouth Pier was opened by the Lord Mayor of London on 11th August 1880.
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