Letter: Pier group and the enemy

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The Independent Online
THE IDEA that invading Germans might tunnel their way to Kent ('The threat of Hitler's tunnel vision', 31 July) was preceded in 1940 by the suggestion that they could land at the various seaside piers around our coastlines, especially those on the east and south coasts. Thus the order went out for them to be sectioned, rendering them immobilised in the event of an attack.

Piers on the west coast fared better, despite a recommendation from Admiral Sir Frederick C Dreyer that most should also be breached. There's an interesting story to explain why the Blackpool piers escaped sectioning. Apparently it was proposed, and someone said in reply that he wouldn't mind the Germans landing on their piers. All they'd have to do would be to place guns at the entrances and shoot the enemy when he arrived]

Apocryphal or not, Blackpool piers thrive today, unlike some that gradually decayed.

Tim Mickleburgh

National Piers Society

Slade Green, Kent