The Victorian Lady has lifted her skirts to reveal her shapely legs – no, not the latest presentation on our 1oo year old mutoscope (which is currently undergoing refurbishment) but the reopening of our fabulous Porthole Room where visitors can get a unique and breath taking view of the underside of the Pier. The porthole was installed in 2015 and has since proved to be one of the most popular attractions on Britain’s only Grade 1 listed Pier.
Through the window, visitors can examine the engineering work which keeps the Pier stable and safe in the ferocious environment of the Bristol Channel which experiences tides averaging 42 feet (the second highest in the world). The Pier’s 100 ft spans are supported by four wrought-iron piles, each made of obsolete wide-gauge Barlow rails, riveted back-to-back. At the top the Barlow rails are curved to form graceful arches. The deck is supported on eight pairs of girders and these and the Pier’s many other architectural features can be examined in detail through the window. The length of the longest pile is 76 feet and at extreme low water there is still a depth of 6 feet at the landing stage allowing the berthing of ships at most stages of the tide.
The Porthole room is open to visitors from this week onwards. Aside from the spectacular view though the window, the room has a fantastic interactive display of historic images from our wonderful Community Archive. The room can be hired for private events and parties. If you would like to have exclusive access to this wonderful community space then click here for the details. We can even provide top quality food and drink for your group or party. If, during your day visit, the room is closed, you can reuse your ticket at another time when the room is available.
Time to look through the window at an unforgettable view. Don’t delay, we will see you soon!