Blackpool’s iconic South and Central Piers have a new owner, after an £8million deal was completed this week. Formerly owned by Crown Entertainment Centres, the piers have been sold to local businessman Peter Sedgwick, who already owns the town’s North Pier.
Crown Entertainment Centres placed the piers on the market in March of this year, along with Llandudno’s Grade II listed structure, as part of a restructuring of the business’s assets. South Pier, which opened in 1892, was listed with a guide price of £3.3m, whilst the older and longer Central Pier – of 1864 origin – scooped a price tag of just shy of £5m.
When the sale was initially announced, a spokesman for the National Piers Society – the organisation which promotes the preservation and continued enjoyment of seaside piers in the United Kingdom – described the piers as “in good order and trading successfully”. It is not believed that the situation has changed following the sale.
In addition to owning North Pier, Peter Sedgwick has operated the amusements rides on both Central and South Piers for a number of years, including the iconic 33m Ferris wheel which features prominently on BBC One idents. Speaking after the sale, Crown Entertainment Centres’s director St John Stott said: “Peter Sedgwick is an experienced, longstanding leisure operator and we are delighted to have sold both the Central and South Piers to him.”
Mr Sedgwick added “To add these two iconic piers to our portfolio is extremely exciting and we hope to capitalise on a group ownership of all three Blackpool Piers to ensure that many thousands of visitors continue to enjoy these wonderful attractions for years to come.”