Langney Shopping Centre will definitely not be demolished and could instead receive investment to create a bigger extended centre.
The roof of the centre collapsed four days before Christmas and the building, which suffered devastating damage, was deemed dangerous by the council’s building control department. It has remained closed ever since.
However, this week the Herald can reveal the owners of Langney Shopping Centre, London and Associated Management Services, have no plans to knock the dangerous building down. They are instead planning on repairing the current structure and are also working on a planning application for an extension of the centre.
No planning application has yet been submitted to Eastbourne Borough Council but a proposal to invest and extend the building to create a larger shopping centre is on the cards.
This is the first time the usually tight-lipped London & Associated Management Services has responded to the Herald’s requests for more concrete updates on the future of Langney Shopping Centre.
Frustrated locals and business people said the closure had caused a massive loss to their livelihoods and to the community as a whole.
A Facebook group called ‘Save Langney Shopping Centre’ was set up and has given residents and businesses a chance to have their say on the shock closure of the popular shopping centre. There were many rumours about its future, but this week London & Associated Management Service issued a statement on its exact plans.
Director David Brown said, “We understand that there are rumours circulating in the local community that, as a result of the roof collapse, the Langney Shopping Centre is going to be closed permanently and possibly even demolished.””I would like to reassure everyone, categorically, that there are no plans to permanently close or demolish the shopping centre. We are working with everyone involved to reopen the centre as soon as it is safe to do so.”
The firm also confirmed it wanted to extend the centre this week and added, “Before the roof collapse on December 20, we had been in discussions with the local planning authority about plans to invest in Langney Shopping Centre. We have developed proposals to extend the eastern end of the shopping centre to bring new tenants in to meet the needs of the local community. The exact size of the extension has yet to be agreed but it will not be as great as 50 per cent. We will consult with the local community as part of the planning application process.