Eastbourne lacks a strong identity. We should seize the opportunity of the post-covid restart to build a great one around our ECN2030 program. With our incredible natural resources, we can aim to become known as a centre of excellence for environmental innovation and a clean green outdoor lifestyle. Ask outsiders about Eastbourne and they may mention an aging population and retirement homes. How great if instead, they saw us as a vibrant eco-green pioneer & a gateway to great outdoor adventures?
We have the Downs, we have a marine conservation area (who would know?), and an ethos of conservation for the promenade and certain part of our architectural heritage. We need to shuck off the shackles of self limiting beliefs and narrow thinking - a realise carbon neutrality sooner than 2030.
In the 1970s the advertising strapline for Eastbourne was “sun trap of the south”due to its many sunshine hours- need to reclaim it or something else that resonates with the green revolution: crowdfunding for solar panels on every suitable roof space including churches (long south rooflines), supermarkets, hotels, etc , look at other local means of power generation, unroll a comprehensive network of roadside electric car charging points, electric taxis, buses, restrictions on diesel ,
The Eastbourne Walking Festival should be better supported by the local council, which only gave it a budget of £5,000 this year. Compare that with the investment the council makes with Airbourne! The WalkFest, if it grows big enough, would raise the green, eco-tourist profile of the town considerably.
We have a political and business culture within the town that wants to encourage airport expansion at Gatwick and a big new A27 motorway between Lewes and Eastbourne in order to make it easier for tourists to visit Eastbourne and businesses to relocate here. There is a tension in the town between the fixation on conventional models of economic growth and the push by civil siciety in the town for a greener model of economic recovery. This tension needs to be resolved.
I couldnt love this suggestion more. Eastbourne can and should be a shining example of a healthy town focused on wellbeing and sustainability. We have a unique position nestled within the most spectacular natural spaces. There is already a flourishing wellbeing industry here as well as passion and expertise in sustainability. If town planning also prioritised walking and cycling we would really start to see a reduction in air pollution and an improvement in peoples health.
I would like to see Eastbourne aim to become known as a role model town for environmental innovation and a clean green lifestyle, and I envision that these factors would add to the town’s attractiveness as a place to come and live, or to visit. I think this would draw not only more people, but a wider demographic of people, to the town than at present, both as tourists and as settlers. That can only help to fuel the local economy, as well as to add diversity to it.
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This content is created by the open source Your Priorities citizen engagement platform designed by the non profit Citizens Foundation