Next stage of the Hastings Stade redevelopment opens

Mayor Kim Forward was among those helping celebrate the Stade redevelopment
Mayor Kim Forward was among those helping celebrate the Stade redevelopment

THE latest stage of the controversial Stade redevelopment has been completed - with the revamped public open space unveiled last weekend.

With the Stade Hall already finished and the new seafront cafe open for business, a host of councillors and dignitaries joined dozens of locals on the seafront stretch to celebrate the end of another section of the work.

The mayor of Hastings, Councillor Kim Forward, cut the ribbon on the new area after arriving at the site on board Happy Harold, the town’s trolley bus.

Joining Cllr Forward was the leader of Hastings Borough Council, Jeremy Birch, whose authority has been roundly criticised by many Old Towners for allowing the development to go ahead.

Built round the soon-to-be-opened Jerwood Gallery, the transformation of the old coach park into a pedestrian plaza, fish preparation school and modern art gallery has met with fierce opposition from traders, worried it will cost them the day-tripper trade.

But, with the gallery set to open this year, the council remains confident the scheme will be a success.

Cllr Birch said “This is another important milestone in the regeneration of this part of Hastings. You can really see the whole project coming together.

“We have already opened the Stade Hall community facility and now you can see the open space - just made for performances, events, markets with the cafe opening out on to it. With the Jerwood Gallery still to open, the new Stade will be a great facility for locals and a draw for additional visitors and I would like to thank all of those who have helped play their part in getting us to where we have today.

“I would particularly like to thank Tim Ronalds Architects and Westridge Construction, local building contractor, the many subcontractors, a lot of whom are also local, for the fantastic development they have created for residents and visitors to Hastings.”