Strike up a tune, Seaford could get a new bandstand to rejuvenate seafront

Seaford beach/seafront Autumn sunshine Nov 25th 2010 E47105L
Seaford beach/seafront Autumn sunshine Nov 25th 2010 E47105L

A bandstand could be built near Seaford’s Martello Tower in a bid to rejuvenate the town’s seafront.

If approved by Seaford Town Council, which owns the land, the entertainment area could offer a space for live music and drama in the town and encourage people to visit the seafront.

This is just one of a number of proposals the Seaford Community Partnership is looking into to improve the seafront.

Others include creating another beach garden on the beach opposite the Salts Recreation Ground, making the Splash Point groyne more accessible and adding seating, and creating an indoor area to enjoy refreshments.

The community partnership is planning to put in a formal proposal to the town council seeking permission to go ahead with the entertainment area, which would be located on seaward side of the deck covering the moat.

It is anticipated the project would be very cheap to complete - a power supply could be taken from the Martello Tower and seating could be sponsored by members of the public.

Peter White, who is a director of the community partnership and involved with Seaford Rock and Jazz Orchestra, said the town council had run out of places to put benches where residents dedicate the bench to the memory of someone who has passed away and this could provide a viable alternative location.

If the town council gives it the go ahead, it could be up and running in summer 2014.

Peter said, “It would provide an attraction for people using the seafront without spoiling the seafront.

“There’s not a lot to do on the seafront except walk up and down it. It will bring people to Seaford Museum. The artistic groups I have spoken to like it.”

The scheme has been well received by some of the music groups, such as Seaford Silver Band and Archway Community Choir.

Peter said he got the idea while travelling in Europe with the rock and jazz orchestra where such entertainment areas are common and it is expected that there would be music or drama there several nights a week.

It would be 400 metres away from the nearest houses.

Work on improving the Splash Point groyne would include building a ramp, seating and replacing the fence, so it would encourage less able bodied people to sit there and enjoy the seafront.

However the community partnership said it had some health and safety issues to address before this could go ahead.

Community partnership chairman Keith Blackburn said, “That’s taking time but it is important that we get things right. Some initial designs have been done and some thought given to possible sponsorship and possible sources of funding have been identified.”

Keith said the partnership would be keen to find a volunteer who had project management experience and someone with a background in health and safety.

The indoor refreshments might be part of a project involving building beach huts at Bonningstedt Parade with some hard landscaping, potentially with toilets and a refreshment kiosk, however this would require a significant amount of funding.

During a consultation exercise carried out by the Community Partnership, it was revealed that people were very keen to have somewhere indoors to be able to have a drink while staying by the sea.

Keith said it was important that these Community Partnership ideas were integrated with Seaford Town Council’s long term Vision for the Town and compatible with emerging ideas for regeneration of the town centre.