Soaring repair bills and falling visitor numbers have forced Hastings Pier (above) into liquidation. The London insolvency practice Leonard Curtis - the insolvency division of Fisher Curtis - has been appointed liquidator to the Hastings Pier Company, which runs what has been one of Britain's best-known landmarks. The pier, which is 910 feet long and 45 feet wide, opened in 1872. Piers enjoyed their heyday in the 1930s, when typically 60,000 people would pass through the turnstiles on a bank holiday. But the changing habits of British holidaymakers have led to fewer people visiting traditional resorts and the pier has seen a steady decline in visitor numbers. Storms caused massive damage to the pier in 1990 and the subsequent refurbishment cost in the region of £1m. Since then the annual cost of repairs has been at least £100,000, and further investment in the various facilities has sent the company into the red. Last month the company closed the pier and released its ten employees. 'With little possibility of improvement in the coming months, and with the prospect of a bleak winter, the directors recognised that they were unlikely to have the necessary cash resources to trade through the winter,' said Leonard Curtis in a statement.
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