Both City Fibre and Lightning Fibre continue their work in Upperton.
Following intervention from your Upperton councillors, extra restrictions have been placed on some work to minimise disruption. These companies also have the right, under the permits issued to them by the County Council, to install poles and other infrastructure.
You can contact County Highways on 0345 608 0193 with your concerns.
Of course you can also still contact us as well.
Cllr Robin Maxted - 07785 799130 - [email protected]
Cllr Sammy Choudhury - 07747 897137 - [email protected]
With Covid figures remaining comparatively high and the Omicron variant - the impact of which remains uncertain - spreading rapidly, organisations and groups are making their own decisions over whether to go ahead with meetings and events. One which was cancelled recently was the fundraising dinner for St Wilfrid’s Hospice. The Hospice, which is celebrating its 40th anniversary, provides a vital service in caring for those who are terminally ill. It costs £17,000 a day to run, 30% of which comes from the NHS, but the remainder comes from fundraising and donations. Whilst the Hospice will lose the money that the dinner would have raised, they are still holding the silent auction, which was linked to this event. There are over 100 items ranging from food and wine to hotel stays, perfume to a handmade table, there is even a big red Teddy Bear. The auction ends on the evening of Friday 10th December, so be quick. If you would like to take a look at what is on offer and possibly bid on an item, you can do so at https://www.jumblebee.co.uk/auction/detail/auction_id/6065#none
Another way to help St Wilfrid’s would be to visit Santa in his Grotto in Victoria Place (the seafront end of Terminus Road). Following previous successes, the traders in the area are hosting a Christmas event this weekend. There will be children’s rides and outdoor stalls and I am told that good old Santa will be donating his profits to St Wilfrid’s, so please go along and give him your support.
This Friday sees the long-awaited return of the panto to Devonshire Park Theatre, and it is Sleeping Beauty this year. With pantomime regulars, Tucker as Chester the Jester, and Martyn Knight as Dame Nellie Night Nurse, there will be fun, music and laughter for all ages. Why not combine a trip with a visit to Eastbourne Christmas Son Et Lumiere this weekend? This free 20 minute show will be projected onto the front of the Congress Theatre this Friday to Sunday at 5pm, 6pm and 7pm and can be viewed from the Devonshire Plaza at the front of the theatre.
Stay safe and enjoy Christmas!
Just as it was beginning to feel as if the threat from Covid 19 was receding we find ourselves faced with yet another variant in the form of Omicron. Learning from the past the Government have acted swiftly and are reintroducing some restrictive measures, in an attempt to slow transmission, whilst seeking to speed-up the booster programme. These measures, which include a return to the compulsory wearing of face masks in shops and public transport, make sense to me. I have tried to learn just how this variant differs from the original strain of Covid 19, but other than a clear belief than it is more transmissible, it appears that at this early stage, the potential impact is still being analysed. Let us hope that this is the extent of the restrictions; further lockdowns which are now being experienced in some parts of Europe would have a devastating impact upon businesses, many of whom have struggled to survive the past two years and are just beginning to recover.
With our own local businesses in mind, let’s remember that this Saturday (4th December) is ‘Small Business Saturday’. Independent businesses are the ones that give an area its unique character. We have some great local businesses in Eastbourne and if we want to ensure that they continue to be part of our town, it is of course important to support them throughout the year. But let’s take the opportunity of ‘Small Business Saturday’ to give them an extra boost this weekend.
If you are planning on being in the Town Centre in the near future, please don’t forget that for the first time in many years there is an ice rink to enjoy. Situated at The Enterprise Centre, next to the railway station, this has been organised by the local Business Improvement District (BID) team. Over the years I have often been asked if the Council could provide an ice rink in Eastbourne and the simple fact is that it is too costly for us to do. So, I congratulate the BID for their initiative and would encourage anyone who likes the idea of ice skating, to support this and by doing so, hopefully ensure that it returns in future years.
LightningFibre Ice Rink on Facebook
Photo left to right: Parliamentary Spokesman Josh Babarinde OBE, Former MP Stephen Lloyd, and Old Town Councillor Peter Diplock
It’s all change for the Liberal Democrats as Stephen Lloyd, Eastbourne & Willingdon's former MP, stands down as Chair of the local party.
He says: “My plan from the beginning has been to resign as Chair once our new parliamentary spokesman was in place and with the outstanding Josh Babarinde having recently been elected by party members to this role, the right moment has come. I am genuinely thrilled that Lib Dem Old Town Councillor Peter Diplock is taking over from me. He’s not only a hard working and popular borough councillor, he’s also a first rate campaigner. As was seen only last May when for the first time ever in the history of our town, the Liberal Democrats came close to winning Meads from the Conservatives. An extraordinary result in what has been a Tory stronghold for well over 100 years!
He and Josh, with the support of our highly experienced Council Leader David Tutt present a formidable team which will, I am sure, win back the parliamentary seat at the next general election. I am pleased to be leaving the local Liberal Democrats in good hands.”
Cllr Peter Diplock added: “We thank Stephen for his tireless work, both for the town and the Liberal Democrats, over the past 19 years. I know that in Josh Babarinde, we have someone who lives and breathes Eastbourne and Willingdon, and will work his socks off for everyone. It's my privilege to join Josh on this journey to give our town the MP it deserves."
Josh Babarinde OBE, Lib Dem Parliamentary Spokesman said: “I am delighted to welcome Councillor Peter Diplock as the new Chair of the Eastbourne and Willingdon Liberal Democrats, succeeding my dear friend and colleague Stephen Lloyd. Like Stephen, Peter will be a strong champion for our local party. I look forward to working with him to deliver for our town.”
One of the effects of climate change is raising sea levels as the polar ice caps melt. Over recent years the rate of erosion has increased rapidly and is already resulting in higher sea levels which threaten many countries, including the UK. Without enhanced sea defences, here in Eastbourne as a coastal area, much of the town is at risk of flooding. This is recognised by the Environment Agency, who are planning to spend in excess of £100m to develop a flagship coastal flood and erosion risk management project for Pevensey Bay and Eastbourne. In order to assist them in planning the scheme they are keen to consult with local residents and learn more about how we wish to use the seafront. In conjunction with Eastbourne Borough Council, they will be holding 3 online webinars:
Tuesday 30th November 18.30 – 19.30
Wednesday 1st December 10.00 – 11.00
Thursday 2nd December 14.00 – 15.00
If you would like to learn more about the plans, please join one of these sessions. You can register at https://consult.environment-agency.gov.uk/solent-and-south-downs/pevensey-bay-to-eastbourne/ where you can also complete a 5 minute online survey to share your views and concerns about our coastline.
I would like to congratulate Sandy Medway for her letter in The Herald last week, in which she highlights what she describes as ‘a once in a lifetime chance for Eastbourne Hospital services.’ Like Sandy, I am a member of the ‘Save the DGH’ Group. This group, led by local campaigner Liz Walke, is made up of members of all political parties, medical professionals and concerned local residents. Our aim is to ensure that all core hospital services are provided here in Eastbourne. As Sandy (a former non-executive director of Eastbourne Hospitals NHS Trust) highlights, ‘we have already lost in-patient beds for orthopaedics; obstetrics; paediatrics and general surgery.’ There are plans to move more services away from the town and despite huge protests, we lost consultant-led maternity services many years ago.
Eastbourne is a large town of over 100,000 people and our General Hospital serves a much larger population extending along the coast and into South Wealden. The Government made a great fanfare of their announcement that we are to have a new hospital and now they must deliver on that promise. This does not mean some refurbishment of existing facilities, but new state of the art provision, with 24/7 access to A&E and all core services included. The once in a lifetime chance is now and as Eastbournians we need to ensure that our voices are heard. If the new hospital is not provided, the town will suffer for generations to come.
Liberal Democrat County Councillor John Ungar has succeeded in forcing the Conservatives, who run East Sussex County Council, to webcast their scrutiny meetings.
Cllr John Ungar explains,
“As Liberal Democrat councillors we believe that we are accountable to the public. Scrutiny meetings are an opportunity to review council policy and services. This is a cross-party opportunity to take an in-depth look at areas of concern raised, either by councillors or by members of the public, if issues are clearly wide-spread across the county. These meetings can act as a positive opportunity to improve our services, as well as to challenge where appropriate, and to hold the Cabinet decision-makers to account.”
Last year Conservative councillors voted against this, but this time common sense prevailed and John’s request was agreed.
Well done John!
Both City Fibre and Lightning Fibre continue their work in Old Town.
Following intervention from your Old Town councillors, extra restrictions have been placed on some work to minimise disruption. These companies also have the right, under the permits issued to them by the County Council, to install poles and other infrastructure.
You can contact County Highways on 0345 608 0193 with your concerns.
Of course you can also still contact us as well.
Cllr John Ungar: 01323 726322
Cllr Peter Diplock: 07366 848096
Lib Dem Eastbourne Council has told developers to deliver greener developments in the future.
Three new duties placed on developers by the Lib Dem council will mean better sustainability, increased biodiversity and more electric car charge points.
Cllr Amanda Morris said,
“Having a carbon neutral target of 2030 means a step change in many areas. The changes we’ve made mean that developers need to put sustainability at the centre of all new developments. They will need to deliver a minimum 10% biodiversity net gain on all developments, alongside electric charge points for each new dwelling.”
Cllr Peter Diplock added,
"Installing electric car charging points at new developments is a very positive step to help reduce carbon emissions and cut pollution in the air we breathe. We’re continuing to work to make sure cycling infrastructure is included in all new developments as well."
Shock and disbelief from Old Town residents as they reacted to the news that East Sussex County Council did not fund the upgrading of the Zebra Crossing to a Pelican Crossing on Church Street, near its junction with Green Street.
They also kept the purse closed so there was no funding available to install a pedestrian phase on the lights at the junction with Victoria Drive, Summerdown Road and East Dean Road.
Old Town's Lib Dem county Councillor John Ungar's campaign for these safety improvements led to County Council officers agreeing that these schemes needed doing, but no money has been made available.
Councillor John Ungar said,
“We cannot leave it there, the campaign must go on.” For this reason, Old Town Liberal Democrats have launched a petition aimed at persuading the County Council to fund these safety improvements.
Eastbourne’s Lib Dem Borough Council are leading the way to help residents reduce carbon emissions and generate clean energy at home by recently running a scheme to scheme install solar panels. Lib Dem-run Eastbourne Borough Council has set a challenging carbon neutral target of 2030, in marked contrast to the Tory-run County Council target of 2050.
Old Town Councillor Jonathan Dow, lead member for Climate Change at the Borough Council, said:
"A key part of our Lib Dem commitment to deliver a carbon neutral town by 2030 and reduce our impact on the environment is the generation and use of more clean, renewable energy. By running this innovative solar scheme, we’ve been able to help residents install solar panels on their roof, in turn helping us move closer to our 2030 target.”
Solar Together Sussex offers high quality solar panels and battery storage to people across the county.