Do you remember the huge Hunstanton pier fire 15 years ago?

Hunstanton pier fire

Hunstanton pier fire - Credit: (submitted) Derek Fairless

It was almost certainly the biggest blaze the town had ever seen.

 A firefighter directs a hose onto the remains of Hunstanton Pier following the fire early on satu

A firefighter directs a hose onto the remains of Hunstanton Pier following the fire early on saturday morning. - Credit: Eastern Daily Press, Archant

Flames tore through an amusement arcade on Hunstanton seafront almost 15 years ago on May 18, 2002.

Fire crews from across Norfolk rushed to the scene in the early hours. As dawn broke, appliances fanned out on the Green around the blazing building, watched by crowds of locals and holidaymakers.

Hunstanton Pier Fire. A firefighter directs a hose onto the remains of Hunstanton Pier.

Hunstanton Pier Fire. A firefighter directs a hose onto the remains of Hunstanton Pier. - Credit: Eastern Daily Press, Archant

Smoke could be seen across The Wash in Lincolnshire. The fire was so intense that change from slot machines melted in the heat. The cause was never established.

The former Jungle Wonderland and CHS Amusements building was all that remained of the former Hunstanton Pier.

Holidaymakers watch the smoke still rising from the remains of Hunstanton Pier following the fire ea

Holidaymakers watch the smoke still rising from the remains of Hunstanton Pier following the fire early on saturday morning. - Credit: Eastern Daily Press, Archant


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The iron structure, built in the resort's Victorian heyday, suffered fires in the 1930s and 50s, before being washed away by a storm surge in 1978.

After the fire, there were calls to rebuild it. Campaigners claimed a covenant obliged the lease holder to replace it.

Smoke still rising from the remains of Hunstanton Pier following the fire early on saturday morning.

Smoke still rising from the remains of Hunstanton Pier following the fire early on saturday morning. - Credit: Eastern Daily Press, Archant

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But West Norfolk council said there was no legal obligation to provide a pier on the site and the stand-off has rumbled on ever since. Today a large bowling alley occupies the site at the foot of the Green.

In 2012, National Lottery officials turned down an application from Hunstanton Civic Society for £7.4m to rebuild the pier. They said there was too little of the original structure remaining.

Hunstanton Pier Fire. Smoke still rising from the remains of Hunstanton Pier.

Hunstanton Pier Fire. Smoke still rising from the remains of Hunstanton Pier. - Credit: Eastern Daily Press, Archant

MORE: Lottery bid for pier turned downWhile Hunstanton may never see another fire like it, it looks unlikely the town will ever see another pier. But Hunstanton Pier has found a new leash of fans, thanks to a song by Hunstanton rock band Deaf Havana of the same name.

Firefighter John Ward inspects the remains of Hunstanton Pier from the hydraulic platform follo

Firefighter John Ward inspects the remains of Hunstanton Pier from the hydraulic platform following the fire early on saturday morning - Credit: Eastern Daily Press, Archant

MORE: Watch Deaf Havana's Hunstanton PierIt describes Sunny Hunny as 'a tourist town with less culture than Jeremy Kyle'.

 The view from the hydraulic platform as smoke still rises from the remains of Hunstanton Pier foll

The view from the hydraulic platform as smoke still rises from the remains of Hunstanton Pier following the fire early on saturday morning. edp 20.5.02 - Credit: Eastern Daily Press, Archant

Smoke still rising from the remains of Hunstanton Pier following the fire early on saturday morning.

Smoke still rising from the remains of Hunstanton Pier following the fire early on saturday morning. 18.05.02 - Credit: Eastern Daily Press, Archant

 Passers by watch as firemen damp down hotspots following the fire on Hunstanton Pier. .

Passers by watch as firemen damp down hotspots following the fire on Hunstanton Pier. . - Credit: Eastern Daily Press, Archant

People enjoying the good weather at Hunstanton - Pier in the background pic taken 18th august 1966

People enjoying the good weather at Hunstanton - Pier in the background pic taken 18th august 1966 m3718-25a pic to be used in lets talk aug 2015

People enjoying the good weather at Hunstanton - Pier in the background pic taken 18th august 1966

People enjoying the good weather at Hunstanton - Pier in the background pic taken 18th august 1966 m3718-26a pic to be used in lets talk aug 2015

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