At the turn of the 20th century the British coastline boasted over 100 pleasure piers. Now only 58 survive. Simon Roberts spent three years photographing them, culminating in a fascinating record of these monuments of Victorian engineering and eccentricity.
The diversity of pleasure piers is striking in these photographs, from the gaudy lights of Blackpool to the simple wooden walkway of Clevedon. Many have a history of gradual decay or sudden catastrophe; others, such as Brighton Pier, still boast four million visitors a year.
Roberts’ 4 x 5 inch field camera, used for the series, reflects the rapidly developing photographic technology during the Victorian era.
This will be an outdoor exhibition on the Hastings Pier Head, which is the first time Pierdom has been showcased on a pier.