Observer Comment: Hope and commitment to positive change

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WITH two good news stories for business this week perhaps both Hastings and St Leonards could be turning a corner.

The announcement of an £8.5 million interest-free Government loan to be spent on developing office space in Priory Quarter and a new business park off Queensway, comes alongside the submission of a bid for £100,000 to assist with the regeneration of Central St Leonards.

In both cases there is the potential to bring in new business and create jobs for local people, and in turn improve the image of both areas.

Of course there are uncertainties, building new office space does not guarantee businesses will move in, with transport links still a real barrier. However with this loan and the Government funding for the Link Road announced last week, Hastings is starting to receive the attention it deserves.

St Leonards, which desperately needs investment may of course not be successful in its bid to become a ‘Portas Pilot’ town, and in any case £100,000 would not be enough to completely transform the area.

But the key is that local people and businesses have begun to work together, to identify the strengths of St Leonards, and what needs to be done to rejuvenate it.

While there are no quick fixes, what we do have here in abundance is hope and commitment to positive change.


THE MINDLESS wanton damage caused to runner Mike King’s car in the early hours of Sunday morning is another tell-tale indictment on the lost generation.

A minority of young people seem to be hell bent on getting drunk and only seem to have had a good night if they have had a fight or caused major damage.

Mr King had driven from Essex to compete in the town’s major annual attraction and ended up with a bill for several hundreds pounds.

What a great advert this is for our town.

These louts and their parents even more so, should be well and truly ashamed of themselves.

It is just beyond comprehension why some reckless yobs think they can just do what they like and get away with it.

This lost generation seems to have no respect for property or some cases human life.

And what is the deterrent if caught?

All the more reason to bring back the boot camps and National Service.

Since corporal punishment was banned in 1986, there has been a lost generation who seem to fear nothing and respect their fellow citizens even less.