Deprived area plans to spend £1m cash boost

The Devonshire Big Local meeting
The Devonshire Big Local meeting

Plans on how to spend a £1 million cash boost in a deprived area of Eastbourne were uncovered at a meeting of the Devonshire West Big Local project last month.

The project’s implementation group held an update meeting at the Crown and Anchor Pub on the seafront to keep local residents and business informed and up to date with progress.

Brian Booker from the group said, “There was a great turnout with residents, local business representatives, two local councillors, other local organisations interested in economic and social development and many people who just wanted to hear what the Devonshire West Project is all about.

“The agenda included a brief introduction from Jim Boot, who is the Big Local representative leading this local initiative, what has been happening so far and the involvement of local charity 3VA which manages the project’s financial affairs until a more formal framework has been established.

“Heidi Lane, the landlady of the Crown and Anchor, spoke movingly about the need to regenerate the local economy and a couple of the implementation group shared their experiences of working together and what it meant for them on a more personal level. A Brighton University representative then gave a brief introduction about learning activities at the university which might benefit the project.

“A brief presentation then took place about the group’s next big step, forming a more formal framework called the Partnership Board to enable the draw down of the £1 million to begin projects which will be spent over the next ten years in the Devonshire West Ward.

“This money will be spent by projects, over the next ten years, that have been created and agreed by residents and local business to improve the overall wellbeing within the ward.”

The evening ended with a question and answer session which gave participants a chance to find out much more bout the project, share their own knowledge of where local improvements needed to be made and questions about what knowledge or skills might be needed to join the project.

For further information on the Devonshire Big Project visit www.localtrust.org.uk