Ryde Pier Then and Now
How times change! Today Ryde Pier is just a means of getting on and off the Island but in times past it was THE place to see and be seen. People would promenade along the pier in their finest, fashionable clothes to view the many boats and ships in the Solent, meet their friends and to have glorious views of the town of Ryde. At various times in its long history it has also been one of the top places of entertainment in Ryde. In the 1960s, for example, the Seagull Ballroom was host to many famous (and soon to be famous) rock bands.
Photo of band playing at Ryde Pier Head courtesy of and reproduced by permission of Roy Brinton.
ISLE OF WIGHT OBSERVER Saturday 27th July 1878
RYDE PIER.- The head of our pier is now a very pleasant spot to spend an evening, for every night either the volunteer or Mr Tollervey’s band play there. The bandmaster of the former has been so frequently complimented on the improvement he has effected that there is hardly any occasion for us to say more than that our Volunteer band supply a great want, and furnishes a great attraction to the pier. Tollervey’s band is also greatly improved, and plays a number of excellent selections, which sound well on the pier. We shall soon have the additional attraction of a military band from over the water.
133 YEARS LATER
Key Developments at Ryde Pier…
New Retail Facilities – including a Costa Coffee at Ryde Pier Head. The full range of Costa’s coffee, drinks, sandwiches, cakes and snacks, plus sweets, newspapers and magazines. The recently refurbished café is situated at the end of the pier, offering spectacular views of Ryde’s seafront and beyond.