WALTON’S iconic pier has been snapped up by a new owner who plans to bring back the attraction’s glory days.

The famous seafront structure is one of the town’s top tourist attractions and the third longest pier in the entire country.

It was previously put up for sale for a whopping £2.5million in 2011, before being taken off the market.

But now Russell Bolesworth has taken the plunge and purchased the attraction, which includes a bowling alley, fairground rides, amusement arcades, a café and a bar.

He has vowed to invest in the pier and make it a top destination.

Mr Bolesworth, 38, said: “It was a great opportunity to buy an attraction with really fantastic history.

“It is a huge site with lots of potential and I’m really excited about it.

“I love the idea of bringing the glory days back to Walton Pier.”

Mr Bolesworth’s family is from Essex originally, but moved to Mablethorpe when he was born.

He also owns and runs a successful Amusement Arcade in the Lincolnshire town, but jumped at the opportunity to expand his empire.

He would not reveal the sum paid for the pier, but said it was a “very reasonable price”.

Since the purchase he has already started a major £300,000 revamp of the amusement arcade on the pier.

Mr Bolesworth added: “There is a great chance for us to refine and expand on what is already here.

“It will not be an easy job because of the scale of the structure itself. The improvements will be made a bit at a time.

“I have already put money into the arcade ready for this summer season, and we are looking at revamping the bowling lanes. That will be the next job.

“For now it will be a case of settling in and really getting a feel for the place, then we can look at what projects need doing.

“I am friends with the Balls who run Clacton Pier and saw them make a huge difference there.

“I would love to have a similar impact in Walton.

“The pier is already very impressive with a lot of history and we have a chance to make it even better.”

Walton pier was built in 1898 and is the third longest in the country at 792.5m, behind Southend and Southport.

It has had a handful of owners over the years, including the Goss family who ran it for more than 50 years.

As of 2011 it recorded an income topping £1.3million every year.