Greater Brighton leaders have praised the vision to transform Newhaven town centre after Lewes District Council received a government funding boost to rejuvenate its high street.

Launched in December 2018 as part of the Government’s Plan for the High Street, the £675 million Future High Streets Fund will help local leaders implement bold new visions to transform their town centres.

The aim is make them fit for the future with co-funding to consolidate properties on the high street, improve transport and access into town centres and convert retail units into new homes.

Earlier this month the Ministry for Homes, it was announced that Newhaven was one of just 50 out of 300 applications across the UK to move through to the second phases of the process.

Those successful towns will now receive up to £150,000 of new funding to work up detailed project proposals, based on their initial plans.

Councillor Dan Humphreys, Chairman of Greater Brighton, said: “This is a considerable achievement given that only one in six bids were successful. Our colleagues at Lewes will be leading on this, creating a detailed business case which will come forward in in spring 2020. I wish them every success with that work.”

Newhaven’s bid, which was one of just three in the south east to go forward to the next round, forms part of Lewes District Council’s ongoing plans to regenerate the town centre, bringing in shops, jobs, housing and an all round better economy and experience in the town for local people.

The bid will now go through to the second phase where a business case will be worked up with help from the Government including a revenue grant of £150,000.

The grant will enable Lewes District Council to commission expert advice or commit internal resources to assist in the development of its business case.

Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government will work closely with them, focussing on those places that have “shovel ready” projects where there might be opportunities to accelerate these

High Streets Minister Jake Berry MP said: “High Streets are a crucial part of our local economies and people care about them because they are also the centres of their community.

“But we recognise that changing consumer behaviour and the rise of online shopping presents a significant challenge and that’s why we are taking action to help them evolve.

“Many of our high streets are successfully re-inventing themselves and with these new plans now in development, local leaders, who know their areas best, will be driving forward the transformation of their town centres into further great success stories.”