West Pier momentos

Gas lantern from West Pier
Photograph by Sean Clark

People seem to think that when things fall off the Pier into the sea, they’ve disappeared. But what happens is they form a reef – an artificial reef.

There used to be gas lanterns on the Pier; serpent lanterns with little gas burners on top. All in cast iron. There’s quite a few of these on the sea-bed, but a lot of them are getting buried now by the sand.

This particular head fell off about two years ago. In the photo it’s been on the bottom for about 2-3 weeks at the most, and already you’ve got lots of baby barnacles and green weed.

I went back to see it again last year and it’s unrecognizable now – you’ve got mussels growing all over it. So you can’t actually see the serpent lantern, just a mass of marine life.

Comments about this page

  • I have two sets of these snakes and pillars rescued from a scrap yard in Shoreham. Both sandblasted back to the¬†original cast iron.

    By David Marchant (27/02/2007)

Add a comment about this page

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *