Hastings Pier and White Rock Trust worked with The Glass-House to start considering the design process for the redevelopment of Hastings Pier. During the period of support, the pier suffered a major fire which destroyed much of the structure. This had an affect on the Trust’s priorities for the redevelopment but in a way has had some positive impact as it has raised awareness of and interest for the pier's redevelopment.
Hastings Pier and White Rock Trust are a community led organisation whose main aim is to bring Hastings Pier back into use as a community facility. Their vision is of a pier which fulfills the traditional functions of a pier but also provides educational facilities and is an anchor for the regeneration of the wider area – part of which encompasses the most deprived area in the South East of England.
The Trust has been working for some time to have the ownership of the pier transferred from the current owners (who have been uncontactable for some time) to the community. They are working with the council who intend to compulsorily purchase the asset and then hand it over to the community to develop and manage. Hastings Pier and White Rock Trust got in touch with The Glass-House towards the end of 2010, seeking support for the appointment of their architect as well as development of a design brief.
The Glass-House commissioned Daisy Froud of AOC Participation to develop a workshop for the group focusing on design brief development and The Glass-House then delivered a second workshop focusing on engaging the wider community in the design process.
During the first workshop, the group began to really think about their draft brief (the document they would give their architect which would communicate their vision and desires for the pier). The workshop included a series of activities to get the group to begin prioritising their wishes for the pier. This was a good way of making the group think critically about essential parts of the new pier, and aspects which are less of a priority if resources are limited. The day also gave the group the chance to build up a collective vision for the design and feel of the pier.
The workshop included an exercise to get the group to think up a series of pertinent questions they could ask the architects being interviewed for the work on the pier.
The second workshop with the group gave them the opportunity to plan their strategy of community engagement and discover new and interesting ways to work with a variety of local people.
Hastings Pier and White Rock Trust is a membership organisation and uses campaigning events and a ‘Sponsor a Plank’ promotion to involve local people in fundraising.
The Trust has taken over a shop on the seafront which it uses to raise funds but also to communicate updates on the pier’s development to the public.
The Trust has a good relationship with lots of local organisations including the arts forum and the council. It would like to work closely with the wider community during the design and redevelopment of the pier, and the support programme with The Glass-House was an initial step towards achieving this.
Project Support Outcomes
- Confidence to appoint the right architect
- Framework for developing a design brief
- Framework for developing an engagement strategy
- A clearer consensus amongst the board of trustees
Response from the Group
"It was lovely to have an opportunity to explore the issues in more depth and find ways of getting consensus"
"It’s good to have a structure for developing the brief, it makes it all much clearer"
"Good ideas of different consultation methods".
Latest Update from the Group
The group has appointed De Rijke Marsh Morgan to work on the pier redevelopment and the Trust will now work with them to engage the wider community and start the development of the first stage of the project.
In November 2012, Hastings Pier & White Rock Trust were awarded a grant of £11.4 million from Heritage Lottery which is a huge boost for the project and leaves them well-placed to achieve their final goal of reopening the pier by the end of 2014. Read more here.
Hastings Pier and White Rock Trust
Hastings, East Sussex
How The Glass-House helped
Informal support over the phone
Brief development workshop
Community engagement workshop
Project Support Outcomes
Confidence to appoint the right architect
Framework for developing a design brief and an engagement strategy
A clearer consensus amongst the board of trustees
Project Support Dates
Other Glass-House Support
Daisy Froud, AOC Participation