What looks like a humble barrel-shaped wagon is actually the home of a most powerful magic. This is the realm of mighty Ivor, a tarot card reader, and soothsayer. From a meager glance at a selection of beautifully illustrated cards, Ivor Fireman can let a visitor know what the future holds next, or maybe that it wasn’t a good idea to visit Brighton Palace Pier. Home to tarot readings and other fanciful attractions, for over 100 years curious patrons have flocked to this pier in hopes of experiencing something whimsical.
Since 1899 when it first opened, the pier has been a central hub of amusement and entertainment in the seaside town. While on its own today, the Palace Pier once shared beach-going tourists with West Pier, and sits on the spot where the Chain Bridge Pier once stood before it was destroyed in an 1896 storm. Born out of a “pier-boom” in the 19th Century, Brighton’s massive pleasure pier is a place of leisurely walks, arcade games, roller coasters, and fantastically greasy fish and chips.
Until 1975, the pier once housed a working theatre where the likes of Stan Laurel, Charlie Chaplin, and other Vaudevillian acts performed. Lost to the pier’s remodeling in the 1980s, the theatre house was replaced with a palatial arcade house—though live performances are still an integral part of the pier’s success.
In 1996, the Spice Girls performed on the pier, and would repeat the performance the next Summer due to the concert’s smashing success.
Considered to be England’s most visited attraction outside of London, step right up to marvel at the old palace on the planks. While the whizzing rollercoasters and fresh doughnuts may first catch the eye, be sure to visit Ivor. If the cards are played right, one’s fortunes may change for the better as a result!