Plans to reinvigorate Bexhill Town Centre have been approved by Rother District Council's cabinet.
A master plan for the future of the town, including more investment and jobs, better traffic management and better use of areas such as Devonshire Square, was backed by cabinet members on Monday (June 3, 2013) following a public consultation. Full council will now be asked to adopt the document.
The strategy says Bexhill's Town Team will have a key role in taking some of the recommendations forward.
Cabinet agreed the Town Team should be given £100,000 of funding to support its plans to regenerate the town centre.
The money, if agreed at council, has come from funds negotiated to offset the impact of a new Marks & Spencer development on the outskirts of town at Ravenside Retail Park.
Officers will continue to work with the Town Team as required, if the recommendation is approved.
Rother leader Cllr Carl Maynard said: "It has always been envisaged that we would work with the Town Team to help deliver this strategy and use money earmarked for the town centre."
Bexhill's Town Team is delighted to have received £10,000 from the Government in September 2012 to pursue its plans for re-invigorating the town centre. MP Greg Barker has taken the lead in joining Bexhill Town Team into the Government's new Town Team Partners scheme which promises to deliver a support package and help from retail experts. The money was awarded because earlier in 2012 a group of traders with support from Rother District Council submitted bids to the Government to become Portas Pilot schemes.
The Town Team is still in its infancy, but is pressing on with work on issues facing the town centre. In January this year we produced our own Response to the Rother District Councilís Consultation on Bexhill Town Centre. This was based on the research we did in 2012 for the Portas Pilot bids. We are now pressing Rother District Council to use the funds made available by Marks & Spencer (for improvements to, and enhancement of, the Town Centre shopping facilities) to carry out the actions we identified in the Response to the consultation.
Hillary Randall, chair of the Town Team, says that its greatest strength is that so many groups and bodies are working so well together in the interests of the town centre and those who use it.
The Town Team is made up of several town centre Traders, the Chamber of Commerce, Rother Voluntary Action, Bexhill Tourism, Bexhill Farmer's Market Association, Bexhill Police, the De La Warr Pavilion, Redwell Estates, Rother District Council and others.