Resident calls to end the ‘blackout’ on Eastbourne seafront

Lights on the upper promenade at Eastbourne (Photo by Jon Rigby)
Lights on the upper promenade at Eastbourne (Photo by Jon Rigby)

An Eastbourne man is calling for the “blackout” on the seafront to end.

Clifford Harris says the top level of promenade between the pier and Wish Tower is a “no-go zone” when the sun sets as the fairy lights have been out of action for more than a year.

He said, “After a fantastic Jane McDonald concert, I along with many other people headed towards the seafront.

“During that short walk, I heard at least six people say how sad it was they could not walk along the top level promenade because of the lack of lighting. This patch of fairy lights has to my knowledge been out of order for well over a year.

“People who had clearly come to Eastbourne, and thought it would be lovely to walk along the promenade but there’s no lighting and it doesn’t look safe.

“The seafront and the promenade is one of Eastbourne’s jewels and it is a shame on so many levels that, come dusk, this area becomes a no-go zone.”

Mr Harris said he first noticed the lights were out last summer and thought there had been a power cut. “But they were just never put on again, it seemed such a shame.”

The 53-year-old said he and his partner have tried to contact the council a number of times about the issue but with “no joy”.

He said, “It seems strange they’re working along the rest of the seafront but the ones in potentially the busiest section have been out for over a year and there is no sign of any effort to get them switched on.

“There’s so many people coming here for a break, and we should be using the seafront. It makes Eastbourne stand out from other places and not only people are not using it but it doesn’t seem safe. I would stick to the road rather than amble along.

“We’ve got the new Bistrot Pierre restaurant arriving soon, one of the best sea views in the country, but if it makes people feel uncomfortable leaving in the dark I would hope something would be done.

“Other businesses will also lose out. I’m sure they could benefit from the seafront being lit again.”

A spokesperson for Eastbourne Borough Council said, “Repairs to sections of the lighting on the seafront took place over the summer.

“Unfortunately, a fault recently occurred with these lights between Eastbourne Bandstand and the Wish Tower.

“The contractor has been contacted and will rectify the problem as a matter of urgency.”