A Christmas message from Council leader David Tutt

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AS I write we are experiencing the harshest winter for many years which, while picturesque, is extremely disruptive both to work and travel plans and to the economy.

The past year has been a difficult one. The new Government has cut back on public spending to tackle the size of the national debt.

Only time will tell whether or not their policies work, but clearly some action was needed, as continuing to borrow at the previous rate was unsustainable and placed the UK on course for financial disaster.

On a brighter note, due to careful planning, I am pleased the Borough Council is able to deal with the cut in Government grant and protect services. We have achieved this by restructuring and reducing the amount of office space required by moving to “agile working”.

The only thing freezing at the Town Hall next year will be the Council Tax!

The local economy is also bucking the trend with new businesses opening and the town rallying behind Stephen Lloyd’s MP’s commission to give Eastbourne a boost.

Now the snow is clearing it is becoming easier to get around. There is so much to do: church services; shopping; cooking; a trip to Devonshire Park to see Cinderella (a fantastic production, great fun for all the family).

For those fortunate enough to have a break, the time will soon evaporate. Others will, of course, continue working and they deserve our gratitude, especially those in the emergency services and forces who will spend Christmas caring for others.

Whatever your plans I hope you find some time to relax with friends and family. My very best wishes for Christmas and the New Year!