Southend Pier is set to be closed for two weeks for a radical overhaul. 

The closures will ensure the public is kept safe during construction activity.

The pier will be closed from Monday until Friday, February 1, but will remain open to the public over the weekend.

It will then close again from Monday, February 4 until Friday, February 8.

Outside the two-week period, the pier will operate its usual winter opening times meaning it will be open to the public from Wednesday to Sunday every week until March 24.

After this date, spring opening times will apply.

The work on the pier entrance will see the addition of a café, seating area, relocation of the reception, general maintenance work and better provision for wheelchair-users.

The new entrance is expected to complete in May.

Other work includes replacing planks and ageing metalwork, which is expected to complete by the summer.

Councillor James Courtenay, cabinet member for growth, said: “We have decided to push on with some major improvements to the pier during the quieter winter months so that it can be enjoyed at its best when the warmer weather arrives and the visitors flock to our shores.

“While maintenance is an ongoing task, the addition of the new visitor entrance will mean visitors get a better first impression and wheelchair-users in particular will benefit from better access.

“We look forward to welcoming many visitors to the pier in 2019 and we hope we can have yet another record-breaking year for pier visitors.”