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October 30th, 2019.

On Monday of this week, Haven News received the press release reproduced below from our MP's office. We have not altered or edited it in any way.

We asked a number of Newhaven Town Councillors for their opinions and these are also reproduced below.

Press Release from Maria Caulfield MP:

Newhaven residents to decide on Towns Fund spending

Newhaven residents will be able to help decide how Government funding is to be spent in Newhaven as part of the #MyTown campaign.

On 27 July the Prime Minister Boris Johnson announced a £3.6 billion Towns Fund, which continues the Government’s work in levelling up our towns and help them to endure as vibrant, prosperous and connected places. On 6 September the secretary of State for Local Government announcing 100 places to develop proposals for Town Deals, including Newhaven following Maria Caulfield successfully campaigning for Newhaven to be included.

The Government want local people to have a say on how Town Deals will transform the place they call home and help to write its next chapter.

The #MyTown campaign has been launched to raise awareness of Towns Fund and encourage people in Newhaven to celebrate their town on social media and contribute ideas on what the money should be spent on. People will be able to share their views on a new dedicated Facebook page and on Twitter using #MyTown. The link for the Facebook page is as follows:

Maria Caulfield MP said “Local people are best placed to know what is needed in Newhaven rather than civil servants or Ministers in London. It is great that the Government have chosen Newhaven to have a Town Deal, and it is even better that local Newhaven residents will be able to have a say in how this money will be spent to improve and regenerate Newhaven. I would urge all local residents to get involved and ensure that this money is spent in the best way possible.”

Newhaven Town Councillor replies:

Cllr. Paula Woolven
I cannot speak on behalf of the council, but my personal views is that, as delighted as I am to welcome any funding into the regeneration of Newhaven, I'm not aware that any figure has been allocated to Newhaven from this fund, only an invitation to develop a proposal?

Asking residents to have an input into a scheme, of course, is vital. However, without knowing how much, when or what restrictions may be put on this particular pot of funding, it seems rather 'Pie in the Sky' to me at this point?

Of course, local authorities should always seek views of the local residents, but unnecessarily raising expectations that this funding or subsequent action is forthcoming, will surely have a negative, rather than positive impact in the short term?

My experience of the various town councils in the area has shown me that Newhaven has a good level of communication with its residents and actively involves groups and individuals in the forward planning for the benefit of all, as has just been seen with the Neighbourhood Plan recently voted in, ensuring more development money will be allocated to the area and a greater say overall. I have no doubt that the Town Council will do all in its power to continue this good practice once we have more details of this potential income.

I look forward to hearing the views of my fellow Councillors on this matter.

Cllr. Lesley Boniface
I can only reiterate what Cllr. Woolven has said. When the time comes, I'm sure working groups and steering committees will be set up in conjunction with the various agencies as the Town Council did when setting out the Neighbourhood Plan.

Cllr. Steve Saunders
You sum the situation up very well Paula.

The money we may get, will be a result of applications and the hard work of Council Officers and not our MP. Rather like her claims to have saved the ferry service a couple of years ago and having secured money for the A259, before she was even an MP!

Any money that is received will undoubtedly go into the LDC pot towards their redevelopment plans for the Town Centre.

Cllr. Heather Pinky McLean
I am really pleased that we seem to be attracting all this money? However, I feel it is really essential to ensure that Newhaven people potentially get a say in what it is spent on?

I think we forget sometimes who voted us in.

The town's people are essentially my boss and it is really important that I am THEIR voice.

And I don't know about any of the rest of you, but after reading my MP's press release, I am still feeling dizzy from all that political spin.

Cllr. Bill Giles - Posted here on October 31st
The Newhaven Town Councillors seem not to have read the press release by our MP Maria Caulfield where she says “the Government has included Newhaven”, to get a share of the money which has been set aside.

My fellow councillors have not had the grace to acknowledge that Maria campaigned for Newhaven to be included in this scheme.

But then there is an election in the offing...

For further information on the Towns Fund announcement at CLICK HERE.

DO YOU HAVE A VIEW? Please email