Joint HPHA & BFF announcement

6th February 2019

site identity
15:40 E&OE

next Ferry from Hythe

15:00 E&OE

next Ferry from Southampton

30,273 miles

since 1st Jan 2017

24oc 3mph NNE

Temperature & Wind

Well what a week that was! I know it has been a little while since we last provided you with a progress report and I am only too well aware that you do want to know what is happening. I hope you will agree with me that the wait was worthwhile.

Over the past few weeks and months we were actually very busy working hard behind the scenes to agree the way that we could secure the best opportunity to move forward and start the restoration project on the pier that we have outlined over the last 18 months. It was therefore really exciting to receive an email from Lee Rayment on Tuesday to confirm his agreement to donate the pier to the association.

This was not just a symbolic gesture, this was the culmination of a genuine commitment by Blue Funnel and months of hard work by the volunteers in this new community group who from a standing start have demonstrated their ability to make a difference.

Of course, in a way we have only just begun. There are still details to be agreed and many operational arrangements to resolve but we do now have the opportunity to start the project and take the first steps to protect and preserve the pier before we move on to restore and redevelop the buildings and structures to create a vibrant community facility for public benefit in the years ahead.

We could not have reached this point without the amazing support of the many groups, organisations, businesses and the community as a whole. So, to everyone who has supported us I want to say a very big thank you all.

Now the real work begins and we will need even more support so please watch out for more announcements in the coming months to see how you can become part of this community project.

As an organisation we will also now be working hard to complete our transition from a fledgling local group into a new community business with clear objectives and charitable status. As a first step in this process I am very excited to announce that we will soon have a full-time project development coordinator in place and this will give us a real lift as the workload ramps up and we embark on the five-year restoration plan.

For me it was a huge privilege to join Lee Rayment on the pier on Wednesday morning and confirm that the community will become the custodians of this very special part of our heritage and be entrusted with the responsibility to ensure we secure a sustainable future. With Lee Rayment and Blue Funnel Ferries I believe we have a reliable partner and with your continued support I can say with confidence that 'Together We Can'

Catch up again soon.

Peter King
Hythe Pier Heritage Association