Eastbourne planners approve £44m Devonshire Park Scheme

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Devonshire Park could soon undergo major works after Eastbourne planners approved a £44 million improvement scheme last night (November 24)

Planning permission has been granted for the scheme, which includes major improvements to the international tennis grounds.

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The Eastbourne Borough Council committee also gave permission to build a new Welcome Building, which will provide conference halls, break out and hospitality areas as well as a cafe with views across the lawns and a new entrance to the Congress Theatre.

The restoration and enhancement of Grade II and Grade II* listed buildings, Devonshire Park Theatre, Congress Theatre and the Winter Garden, was also given the go ahead.

Councillor Margaret Bannister, lead cabinet Member for tourism and leisure services, said, “I’m delighted that planning permission has been obtained for this exciting scheme that will make Devonshire Park a flagship cultural venue on the national stage.

“This decision means we can now look ahead to the next step which is consideration for full funding by Cabinet in December.”

If approved construction on the project will start in 2016 and tis expected to be completed in 2020.

Leader of the opposition, Councillor Tony Freebody, said, “This is a major step in the development of Devonshire Park, and I am delighted that planning permission has been granted. This is another piece of a large jigsaw puzzle that when completed will transform our town into a first class cultural hub.”

The new designs were drawn up by a team led by architects Levitt Bernstein.

Gary Tidmarsh, Chairman at Levitt Bernstein, said, “We are delighted that planning approval and listed building consent was granted last night. We believe these proposals will deliver an exemplary visitor and cultural attraction which will enhance the role Devonshire Park plays in the lives of the people of Eastbourne and its many visitors.”

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