IF the Arndale Centre closed tomorrow would anyone suffer?
Would the people of Eastbourne have nowhere to buy food? Nowhere to buy clothes?
Would we have nowhere to bank? Nowhere to get our prescription drugs? Nowhere to buy our books, our mobile phones, our housewares? Nowhere to drink a coffee?
The answer is no we would not suffer a jot if the Arndale Centre closed tomorrow.
Indeed, one could argue that we would all benefit. And benefit massively. Because the shops within it would simply move to Terminus Road locations. Our ‘high street’ would be regenerated and enlivened.
Our town would come alive once more and enter the 21st century.
One could argue the 1970s Arndale is a passed-its-sell-by-date concept that blights Eastbourne.
It sucks the best shops from the High Street and has turned Eastbourne town centre into a miserable looking unregenerated urban centre.
Argument 3. Given that ‘popular high street shops’ already exist happily at both Arndale and Sovereign Harbour – eg Boots and Next – the argument that only the Arndale needs development is specious nonsense.
It lacks logic. It lacks intelligence.
Where do the profits of Boots in the Arndale and Boots at Sovereign Harbour go? To Boots PLC, right?
Secondly have these L&G guys not heard of the internet?
What planet do they reside on? Planet Greed obviously. But no-one has to shop any more offline. Clearly this reality has not dawned on the developers.
Conclusion: both development should go ahead unmolested.
Both development can and should exist side by side as they already do.
If the Arndale boys insist on trying to ‘blackmail’ our democratically elected politicians deny them their planning permission.
Close the Arndale Centre down.
Move the shops to Terminus Road. Reinvigorate our ‘high street’ for the 21st century.
The 100,000 residents of Eastbourne will be better off.
For we will enjoy a vibrant 21st century thoroughfare and a vibrant 21st century Sovereign Harbour.
We do not need the Arndale Centre. We do need a dynamic ‘high street’. We do need a dynamic Sovereign Harbour.
Harbour Quay, Sovereign Harbour.