The news that one of the Governments funding streams has allocated £440,000 for the Social Enterprise set up to run the Lido in Saltdean is a great boost to all of the residents of Saltdean as well as those of us who live nearby. The wonderful Art Deco Lido sits near the matching Butlins Hotel which is now private housing and both buildings should be cherished. Although converting the Hotel into housing was a sensible way of preserving the building, clearly the same option is not possible with the Lido. In any event ensuring that a much loved community facility in Saltdean could reopen is an excellent investment of our public money. According to this report the next step is for planning consent to be granted by Brighton & Hove Council for a number of changes and additions to the site to enable the venue to be used to its full potential. Let us hope they take as enlightened a view as the Government have when it granted the money from its Social Investment Business funding stream.
Perhaps whilst the Government is granting funds to Sussex projects it could also make a decision regarding the Lewes to Uckfield train link, bearing in mind that they were speaking about railways yesterday. That would give even more of us something to celebrate! The link between the Lido and the Uckfield line is that in both cases, local people and businesses have been at the forefront of pushing for these historical facilities to be reopened for the use of the whole community. Clearly there is a big difference between a local swimming pool, no matter how significant its architecture, and laying 8 miles of rail track on a disused railbed, but on the other hand the cost of the Uckfield line is small change in the contingency costs for HS2.