SWANAGE Pier Trust is set to launch a Crowdfunding Campaign, as part of its 'Save Swanage Pier' appeal.

The project - to undertake urgent repairs to the Grade II-listed structure, create a new visitor's centre with exhibition and education spaces, and install new retail and catering facilities - already has provisional support from the Heritage Lottery Fund.

However, Swanage Pier Trust need to raise £900,000 in match-funding by November this year.

To date, the trust has secured £400,000 - thanks to donations and a number of grant applications.

The Crowdfunding Campaign, essentially an online appeal, runs for five weeks from June 14.

Swanage Pier Trust chief executive Ben Adeney said: "We are extremely grateful for all the donations coming forward, every penny is going directly towards the match funding.

"The Crowdfunding Campaign is the next critical phase in our fundraising which will take us a major step towards achieving our goal.

"It is a tense time for us because of the way Crowdfunding works, if we don’t manage to get our full target funded, we don’t receive any of the funds, so we would encourage anyone who has been considering supporting the appeal to visit the Crowdfunder website to make a pledge."

Pier volunteers have been holding monthly collection days at the town's Co-op supermarket, and collection boxes are also in place around Swanage.

The recent raffle for the 10,000th plaque at the pier raised £4,500 for the appeal.

When the trust took over management of the pier, it had been left to deteriorate for over 30 years, and the structure required significant maintenance and restoration.

The trust has undertaken repairs over the years, however, a recent survey has revealed that 41 of the pier’s timber piles are in a critical condition.

Mr Adeney said: "This really is our one opportunity to save Swanage Pier for future generations and we only have a short timeframe to secure the funds we need.

"The pier is an integral part of Swanage's character and a critical part of its heritage, which plays an important role in the towns's appeal as a tourist destination."

Pledges receive awards including strolling passes for unlimited pier visits, personalised brass plaques and limited edition watercolour illustrations.

Visit crowdfunder.co.uk/save-swanage-pier from June 14 onwards and donate from as little at £10.