A major regeneration scheme in Lewes is taking a big step forward as contractors begin demolition work on site.

The North Street Quarter development will transform a key part of the county town providing 416 new homes along with community and business spaces, riverside promenade, and a 330-space underground public car park.

Developers behind the scheme have now received confirmation from the planning authority that the pre-commencement planning conditions for phase 1 of the scheme have been met meaning work to prepare the ground for development can now begin.

The work to demolish some of the buildings in phase 1 – units 8-11 Phoenix Place – is due to start this week (January 7) and is expected to be completed at the end of February.

The area set to be redeveloped focuses on North Street and the Phoenix Industrial Estate. The aim is to create a vibrant neighbourhood and reconnect it to the heart of Lewes.

The scheme has benefited from a range of money secured through Greater Brighton and the Coast to Capital Local Enterprise Partnership. This includes a £55,000 grant through the One Public Estate programme and £10 million via the Housing Infrastructure Fund.

During the demolition work the contractors will seek to salvage parts of the old ironworks that have historical interest. The majority of the phase 1 demolition will take place once a developer has been appointed later in the year.

Phase 1 of the scheme includes the construction of the health hub, with a public car park below, business units for creative industries and 238 homes, including the majority of the affordable housing.

As well as much needed housing and the new community health facility for 26,000 patients, the North Street Quarter scheme is contributing additional benefits to the town. These include completion of the flood defences, improvements to highways and upgrading Pell’s recreation ground and Malling Fields.

The remainder of the site comprising 178 homes will be developed after phase 1. A public exhibition about the appearance and landscaping details was held last October and feedback from the event has helped shape the plans. The proposals have now been submitted to the planning authority for approval.

The next step for North Street Quarter’s landowners, Lewes District Council and North Street Quarter Ltd, is to appoint a developer to build the scheme according to the approved plans.

Any queries can be emailed to info@northstreetqtr.co.uk