Residents vote against funding plan for £6.9m arts venue

An artist's impression of the venue. Picture supplied by Colliers International
An artist's impression of the venue. Picture supplied by Colliers International

Residents in Burgess Hill have voted against a funding plan for a £6.9million arts venue to be built in the town by a majority of 13 votes.

Burgess Hill Town Council revealed the decision of a public vote at a press conference today.

It had asked residents whether they supported the funding for the new venue, which was dependent on securing a loan of £5million. And in order for this to be paid back, residents’ council tax would have been increased.

The town council had indicated that if the public did not support the plan, the centre would not go ahead.

The community and performance venue, which was put forward as part of Burgess Hill’s Cultural Quarter, was to replace Martlets Hall, which is due to be demolished as part of the £65m town centre regeneration project, by developer New River Retail.

That will see the town gain a ten-screen cinema, hotel, 142 flats, a new library, as well as extra retail and restaurant units. But the developer did not include a replacement for the Martlets Hall, which it did not deem viable.

See this week’s Middy for a full report on the decision.

What do you think about the decision? Email your views to middy.news@jpress.co.uk