THE official reopening of Swanage's Grade-II listed pier, which has undergone a £2.2 million revamp, took place yesterday.

Actor and television presenter Timothy West, who is an honourary patron of the National Pier Society, did the honours.

Wednesday's launch event marked the end of two years of work, which has seen dozens of ageing wooden blocks replaced and a new visitor centre and cafe facilities added.

Swanage Pier Trust chief executive Ben Adeney said: "Following the official completion of the pier restoration work, we are absolutely delighted to announce, thanks to all our supporters, volunteers and the local community, that Swanage Pier will be officially welcoming visitors to the new visitor centre, gift shop and café this summer."

Although Swanage Pier itself has existed since 1859, the current pier was opened in 1897, with the Swanage Pier Trust acquiring it 1994.

The Marine Villas element of the restoration project was completed in September, last year.

Funders of the project include the Heritage Lottery Fund, Coastal Community Fund, The Fine Family Foundation, Dorset County Council, Purbeck District Council, Swanage Town Council, trusts and foundations.

Swanage Pier Trust's Amanda Bowden said: "We have really enjoyed the grand opening of the Marine Villas and Swanage Pier today.

"This also served as a thank you to everyone involved in the project.

"Timothy West came out and cut the ribbon."

More than 125,000 people visit Swanage's Victorian pier each year.

Plans for the new visitor centre involves an exhibition about Swanage's heritage, marine environment and world heritage coastline.

The trust also wants to develop educational activities at the pier.

Back in 2013 the pier was left in urgent need of emergency repairs following major storm damage that caused parts of the structure to collapse.