The pier had its origins in a much shorter pier of just 242 ft
on 16 wooden piles and opened in 1858 by the St George's Harbour and
Railway Company. Unfortunately,
that pier was severely damaged in the great storm of October 25th,
and although repaired and
used for a further 16 years, the pier was too short and could only be
used by steam ships at high tide.
The present pier, built for the Llandudno Pier Company by
Macfarlane of Glasgow using iron castings from the Glasgow Elmbank
foundry, was opened to the public on August 1st, 1877.
The land wards extension to the same design, still in deep water and
also supported on iron columns, was opened in 1884 and a new landing
stage was added in 1891.
This 2,295 foot pier, the longest in Wales
and greatly admired
by Sir John Betjeman, is probably the finest pleasure pier in Britain.
Tourist Authority report in 1975 said of it…. ‘It zooms out of the sea
….in a spectacular Indian Gothic style rather like a Maharajah’s palace
floating on a lake. Cast iron, brackets of iron lace work, an
outstandingly pretty balustrade like an enlarged fish net, ogee roofs
curling away to the sky, all add up to a totally pleasurable
experience.’ The pier company maintain their property well with fresh
paint work and fine wooden decking, much of which has been renewed in
The landing stage, which was rebuilt in
concrete and steel in 1969, was used regularly until 1982 by the Isle
Company for excursions to
Douglas and occasionally since. It is also used from time to
time by the
Waverley and Balmoral Steamer
Preservation organizations for more local excursions - click the link
stage is also a
Bait, rods and lines can be bought from 'Paddy's Bait & Tackle' at the gate.
Sailings from Llandudno by Steamers and Cruise Vessels have ceased,
it is hoped only temporarily, owing to the need for repairs to the landing stage,
and for which there are, it is understood, no funds available.
The last sailings to Douglas in the Isle of Man were in May 2005,
since when the "Lady of Mann" has been sold by the Isle of Man
Steam Packet Company for service in the Mediterranean.
The MV Balmoral last visited Llandudno in June 2006.