Excavation work is underway for the new Welcome Building at Devonshire Park that is part of Eastbourne Borough Council’s £44 million redevelopment of the area.
The new building will provide a fully accessible entrance to the Congress theatre, including lifts to every floor, two new large conference spaces, a central box office, breakout and hospitality areas and a coffee and wine bar with views across the tennis lawns to the International Tennis Centre.
The excavation, around four metres deep, will involve nearly 18,000 tons of soil being removed in 650 lorry loads over an eight-week period.
Cllr Margaret Bannister, Lead Cabinet Member for Tourism & Enterprise, said, “We can really see the site starting to change as the excavation takes place. This new Welcome Building will reinforce Eastbourne’s reputation as a premier conference destination.”
At the same time as the excavation, major refurbishment work is also being carried out inside the Congress Theatre to install a new lighting bridge, replace old heating and air-conditioning systems and install 1,600 new seats.
In June, work was completed on the new tennis players’ village which houses player changing rooms, fitness and physio suites, player lounges and medical facilities.
The completion of the redevelopment will create first-class cultural, conferencing and sporting facilities known as The Devonshire Quarter.