Hastings Pier reopened last Saturday, after an electrical fire in the pier cafe put the attraction out of action for a week.
It has been five months since the pier came under the new ownership of property magnate Sheikh Abid Gulzar, who has credited the “very quick thinking” of his staff in “minimising the damage” caused on the morning of November 24.
The cafe was only recently rebuilt, and so whilst the fire damage may have been minimal, Gulzar said an extensive investigation into its cause had been warranted.
“Given that the rebuilding of the restaurant was only two years ago this should not have occurred and needed a full investigation,” he told the Hastings Observer. “We have had a very successful five months since taking the pier over and this was an unfortunate incident.”
Still, as British piers have a sensitivity to fires – as Hastings itself saw back in 2010 – Gulzar was full of praise for the “quick thinking” of his staff and the “thoroughly professional job” performed by responding fire teams, who were able to quickly contain the blaze after sizing it up through the cafe’s glass facade.
“The pier was evacuated in a matter of minutes,” commented local fire service commander Dan Channon. “The staff did a fantastic job…there was minimal damage, a very good evacuation and all the procedures worked very well.”