DAVID TUTT, LEADER OF EBC: We’re heading the right way on virus

It is good news that the number of new Covid-19 cases remains low.

Tuesday, 16th March 2021, 2:25 pm

At the time of writing the seven- day total for Eastbourne was 23, which means that whilst the virus has not gone away, we are heading in the right direction.

Time will tell whether the return of children to school has an adverse impact on the rate of infection, but with warmer weather and the restrictions due to change, there is every prospect of outdoor picnics over the Easter holiday.

There were mixed blessings in the Chancellor’s budget.

A freeze on personal allowances means that most people will be paying more tax, which may not be seen as surprising given the cost of the pandemic.

However, one of the potentially positive announcements for Eastbourne was the launch of the ‘levelling-up’ fund.

This allows all councils to bid for sums of up-to £20m from a £4.8m pot for projects based in three categories:

• Economic recovery and growth

• Improved transport connectivity

• Regeneration

Whilst it is only an opportunity to bid and there is no guarantee of success, Eastbourne has been placed in the top priority group along with 122 other councils, so our chances might be considered better than average.

Since the announcement a number of ideas have been suggested by local people.

We are only allowed one bid, so all ideas will be assessed in order to establish the strongest.

We need to act fast as the first round of bids closes on June 18.

A number of people have contacted me recently asking about the ability to walk-into the recycling centre in St Philips Avenue.

This site is run by Veolia on behalf of East Sussex County Council, so I checked with their Director of Environment.

He tells me that they do allow pedestrian access, but as the site has been so busy recently they have restricted this to the last hour of each day for Health and Safety reasons.

This is 11am to 12noon at weekends, 3pm to 4pm Mondays to Thursdays and 2.30pm to 3.30pm on Fridays.

They see this restriction as a temporary measure and will keep it under review.

Stay safe!