Everyone knows about the Blackpool Tower, but few people know that New Brighton too had a similar tower which was infact taller.
The New Brighton Tower was taller than its cousin, standing it 172.8 metres and a massive success when first opened. The Blackpool Tower stands at a mere 158 metres compared to it.
Work started on its construction on 22 June 1896. The tower, which weighed 1,000 tons, was completed in 1900.
During the construction of the Tower six workmen were killed and another seriously injured either though falls or accidents. On completion the Tower was the highest building in the country.
Soon after the Tower was opened a young man threw himself off the balcony to be the first suicide from the building.
It sat in sumptious gardens with an enormous 2000 capacity ballroom at its base. Four lifts took the sightseers to the top of the structure at a cost of 6d offering views of as far as the Isle of Man, Manchester and Mount Snowdon.
Unlike the Blackpool Tower it had a lavish gothic base, as if sat ontop of a stately home.
It remained popular until World War One, the nation stopped partying so much and the tower was shut-down temporarily.
Sadly during the shut-down period the metalwork was neglected and it got rusty so with the war over in 1919 it failed to be suitable for public use.
Faced with a massive bill for restoring it the owners instead decided to pull it down and rely on income from the ballroom and gardens. It was dismantled between 1919 and 1921.
The ballroom lasted as a top concert venue until fire gutted it in 1969, shortly after the Beatles played there.
Other than the ballroom and the gardens, New Brighton Tower had a lot more to offer including:The 'Old English Fairground'
- Featuring the Himalayan Switchback Railway, Water Chute and a Lion House.The Theatre
- The theatre could hold 3,500 people, with the world's largest stage measuring 45 feet wide and 72 feet deep.The Athletic Ground
- To the rear of the Tower Building, with football pitch in the centre. It had a cycle track around it, where Cycle Championships were staged, the World Cycling Championship was held on the Tower Track in 1922. Motor bike racing was also staged on the track.American Roller Skating RinkAn Open Market and ShopsPrivate Police Force
- Consisting of 15 men to parade around the Tower and it's grounds to keep order.
The Tower Also had it's own football club - New Brighton Tower Football Club - Founded in October 1896 and battled for a place in the First Division of the Football League in the 1898/99 season. In those days there were 16 teams in the English League, which consisted of first and second divisions only.