Two Conservative candidates have launched a campaign to save Ore High Street.
James Dee and Oliver Devaux are calling on Hastings Borough Council to reduce business rates, improve car parking facilities and create an attractive area for visitors and residents.
“The high street is a hugely important asset to our residents,” Mr Dee said.
“The small independent shops and local businesses are the backbone of our local economy and need our every support.”
The campaign also focuses on other high streets in the area, particularly Silverhill, Battle Road and West St Leonards.
Mr Dee said: “We are calling for a reduction in business rates and for easier car parking for visitors so the high street is an accessible place to shop and visit.”
Mr Devaux added: “James and I really want Ore High Street to become a place of pride for local people.
“We are campaigning for support for local businesses and to enhance and develop the aesthetics of our high street. We believe by making these improvements and supporting local businesses, the high street will be a better place for all.”
Cllr Peter Chowney, leader of Hastings Borough Council, said: “I completely agree with the Conservative candidates in that Ore Village needs major attention.
“On-street parking is badly managed, and traffic management is poor.
“Footways too are poorly maintained, cluttered, and neglected, making for a poor street scene.
“I also agree that business rates are often too high for small businesses. Revaluation appeals are complicated and can be expensive, so are not an option for many small businesses.
“I am sure the local Labour councillors and candidates for the May 2018 local elections would be happy to join the Conservative candidates in a campaign to fight for a better deal for the government and county council, although they have, of course, been doing this anyway.
“However, these are all the responsibility of East Sussex County Council.”
East Sussex County Council declined to comment. Cllr Laurie Loe, the ESCC representative for Baird and Ore, had not responded by the time the Observer went to press.
To find out more about the campaign, visit James and Oliver’s social media pages.