Why are shops needed in new Eastbourne plan?

From: Violet WindsorRichmond Place, Eastbourne

Thursday, 20th May 2021, 4:19 pm

It’s good that there are plans to develop the TJ Hughes site for flats but does Eastbourne really need more shops beneath them?

Looking around the town today there are more closed and empty shops than there were a year ago and there is a widespread expectation that shopping habits have changed to greater use of online shopping. Moreover, incomes are low in this area; with comparatively expensive housing costs.

People, whether local or from outside the area, have time to spend and maybe Eastbourne should be looking to offer facilities that develop skills, interests and learning opportunities for adults especially?

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The government has signalled support for lifelong learning so local government could usefully be planning its implementation.

The developer, Capreon, appears to have close links with charities with social and educational objects so that too could be advantageous.

Your paper mentions that there will be consultation before the application is submitted.

It would be good if this included consultation with Eastbourne residents who all to often only have a chance to express their views through making comments or objections once a planning application has been lodged.

It is equally clear that local residents are unhappy and often angry with this process.

Surely things could be improved and local people listened to before developments are foisted on us?