£4.7m boost for lido restoration

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Published: Sunday 22nd February 2015 by The News Editor

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A famous art deco lido will be given a makeover after receiving another £4.7 million in funding.

Saltdean Lido on the East Sussex coast has been awarded the cash from the Heritage Lottery Fund to renovate the site and bring the historic 1930s building and pools back into use.

The one-of-a-kind bathing pool, which originally opened in 1938, was earmarked for redevelopment as flats.

But Brighton and Hove City Council agreed to take back control of the site after a community campaign to save it.

A 60-year lease was granted to Saltdean Lido Community Interest Company (CIC) in May 2012 with a view to restoring the facilities.

Rebecca Crook, Saltdean Lido CIC chairwoman, said: “The backing of the Heritage Lottery Fund has always been central to the success of our project and we are delighted that all our hard work is coming to fruition.

“The Saltdean Lido CIC will be creating new jobs and bringing new revenue and much needed investment to the area.

“However, there are many challenges for community groups such as ours who are bringing heritage buildings back into use.”

A heated outdoor pool, indoor and outdoor play areas, cafe, gym, community and function rooms will be installed and the library will be improved.

Ben Greener, historic environment adviser for the Heritage Lottery Fund, said: “When it was built Saltdean Lido was the beating heart of a successful seaside resort.

“Sadly, as the lido declined, so did Saltdean.

“Yet local people have never forgotten how important this heritage icon was to their town.

“Now, through our Heritage Enterprise scheme, the community can breathe new life into this precious local landmark, signalling Saltdean’s return to prosperity whilst saving one of the most significant lidos in the UK.”

The building is grade II-listed and the site is on the English Heritage At Risk Register.

After just three successful seasons the lido closed in the summer of 1940 and did not reopen to the public again until 1964.

During the Second World War the National Fire Service used the pool as a water tank and the grounds for training.

Heritage Lottery Fund has agreed to give the group £576,000 in development funding with a further £4.2 million pledged for the refurbishment of the building.

Another £2.3 million was donated by The Coastal Communities Fund in January and £490,000 was given by the Social Investment Bank last year.

The project still has another £2 million to complete the work.

Published: Sunday 22nd February 2015 by The News Editor

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