Photo of Councillor James MacCleary
Newhaven town centre is set to benefit from a multi-million pound award after Lewes District Council successfully bid for £5,004,939 from the future high streets fund.
The fund was set up by the government to "renew the country's high streets".
The council's bid, entitled Re-imagining Newhaven, focuses on re-purposing derelict and under-used buildings as well as better integrating, diversifying and strengthening the town centre, so that it offers a wider range of services for residents, as well as attracting those working or visiting the town to spend more money locally to help build community wealth.
Councillor James MacCleary, Leader of Lewes District Council and ward councillor for Newhaven South, said: "I'm obviously pleased that the town where I live is set to receive this funding, it will allow us to kickstart some really important change in the town and create yet more momentum behind the longer-term regeneration that is now well underway.
"However, I am firmly of the belief that our superb bid to the government deserved the full £7.2m we were asking for, nothing less. Clearly, the decision makers in Westminster thought differently and I will read with great interest the reasons that they felt our town wasn't worth the full amount."
The Re-imagining Newhaven is the latest step in Lewes District Council's regeneration plans for the town, following the designation of the town as an Enterprise Zone in 2017, alongside the emerging Towns Fund submission for up to £25m of further investment.
Councillor MacCleary added: "This has been a long process and it's important to say that the initial bid was submitted by the previous administration at the council so it's important to reflect that this is an achievement for the District Council as a whole.
"A great deal of work has been undertaken to reach this point and now more hard work begins as we accelerate the preparatory steps needed in advance of spades in the ground."