BIG business with all its glitter sends local planners into raptures. There are big plans to extend the Arndale and lavish ideas on how to modernise Eastbourne’s town centre.
But do we want to look like hundreds of other modern towns? Maybe there is value in holding onto the town’s unique Victorian character; it attracts the film makers and I believe it’s an important reason why so many people flock to Eastbourne for their holidays.
Because of ‘pay and park’ the town centre is dying, one third of the trade that once supported the town centre has gone to the out-of-town shopping centres.
These are constantly growing while the town centre is rapidly falling into what the Americans call the ‘doughnut effect’.
If planners are really concerned for the future of the town then they must address the real problem; the large number of now empty shops, the quality of our infrastructure (trees, pavements etc) and remove the parking charges, to attract back the shoppers.