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issue 02

A Day at the Beach Staying safe at Camber this summer

Park Gets a Makeover ÂŁ1 million for Egerton Park

Win Tickets in our Competition See inside for details VIEWS magazine


ROTHER VIEWS 02 / Contents

Welcome to VIEWS

4 Rother News Latest from around the district

11 Saving Energy Free or discounted insulation

6 Pebsham Countryside Park A green space for all

11 Sense of Place Cleaning up fly-tipping in Rother

7 Bexhill Museum Behind the scenes of the redevelopment

12 Egerton Park £1 million park regeneration

8 Camber Sands Staying safe at the beach

14 What’s On? Events in Rother and Battle Abbey competition

10 Village Shops Forum Shop owners get talking

15 De La Warr Pavilion Summer programme

10 Money Trouble How we’re helping during the recession

This is our second issue after a successful pilot last year. A big thank you to all the readers who responded to our survey – we’ve listened to what you said and added a few ideas of our own too, so we hope you’ll find the magazine an even better read this time around. Rother is a great place to be, particularly in the summer. A variety of attractions, many of them provided by the Council or supported by us, give you something to do whatever the weather. Our coastline is much enjoyed by our residents and visitors, but many people won’t appreciate that the beaches are managed by us. You can find out what our staff at Camber get up to on page 8. The Council is mindful of the impact the recession is having on residents. You can

find out what we are doing to help within the pages of this magazine. We’ll also be letting you know more about the many services Rother District Council provides in this issue. We do more than empty your bins. We’d like to hear what you have to say about this issue of Views. If you have any comments please send them to the email address at the front of the magazine. Best wishes,

Derek Stevens Chief executive, Rother District Council

16 Love Rother, Love Recycling Pat on the back for Rother recyclers

Council Diary

June 8


15 Improvement & Resources Overview & Scrutiny Committee 18 Planning Committee 24 Audit Committee (commences at earlier time of 2pm) 29 Council

July 6


16 Planning Committee 23 Licensing & General Purposes Committee

This information can be made available in large print, Braille, audiotape/CD or in another language upon request. Please telephone 01424 787000 Email

Cover Picture: Camber Sands by Chris Parker. Photographs © Bob Mazzer, Chris Parker, Justin Lycett, Steve Hunnisett, Toby Field, Peter Cook, Bexhill Observer and Distributed free to households within Rother. Copies also available from Bexhill, Battle and Rye Community Help Points.


Meetings normally take place at the Town Hall, Bexhill, but may be held at other venues. Occasionally dates and times can be subject to change. Check at www. for up-to-date details.

Meetings start at...


Editorial by Daniel Collins - Rother District Council. Additional content by Katie Oliver. Designed by Hastings Borough Council - May 2009

Ever wanted to know how we make our decisions at Rother? Then come along to one of our meetings. All the sessions listed are open to the public.

27 Services Overview & Scrutiny Committee

August 3


13 Planning Committee

September 1

Improvement & Resources Overview & Scrutiny Committee Cabinet


Planning Committee



Cabinet Meetings

10 Planning Committee


Services Overview & Scrutiny Committee


Improvement & Resources Overview & Scrutiny Committee, Audit Committee, Licensing and General Purposes Committee and meetings of Full Council

14 Services Overview & Scrutiny Committee 15 Standards Committee 17 Licensing & General Purposes Committee 28 Council 30 Audit Committee

Printed locally on recycled paper.

VIEWS magazine


Rother News

Play time at Westfield

Students have a rubbish time

tin girls get e

activ Teenage girls and ladies in Rother are being encouraged to keep fit with a string of fun activities.

A few of them even got to try out the chairman’s seat in the council chamber as part of their visit.


Pupils were left with the challenge of following the golden rules of rubbish:

Girls Gettin’ Active is a new initiative being launched by Active Rother and features judo, Pilates, street dancing, cheerleading and much more besides.

• Refuse unnecessary packaging • Reduce the amount of waste you create

Active Rother is a partnership between Rother District Council and NHS Hastings and Rother. It is part of a national campaign to get two million people more active by 2010.

• Re-use items where possible • Recycle as the final step and know how to do it. The youngsters each took home a reusable bag to use on future shopping trips. For more information on waste and recycling visit

Did you know? Pupils take a look at recyclables.

Pupils from Bexhill, under the banner of the Schools’ Consortium, were invited to the Town Hall to learn more about waste and recycling.

current recycling rate of around 40%.

We have also invited students from rural schools to visit.

The youngsters were given the opportunity to take part in games and pose questions on the subject of recycling.

Rother is one of the fastest improving districts in the country for recycling, with a

Students were told how, with their help and the support of their parents, things could be made even better.

Recycling is just one of over 50 services Rother District Council provides. These services are all delivered for the lowest Council Tax in East Sussex – just over £3 a week on a band D home.

When Russell’s Garage, in Bexhill, closed last year there were fears that the site would stand empty and be of no use 4

to the community. Instead, the Council supported a successful local charity which is taking on the challenge of turning the showroom and garages into a social enterprise and training centre for the town.

“We want to thank all our customers and all the residents who have used our free collection service to make sure that their surplus furniture and appliances are reused to help others in our community,” said Naomi Ridley of HFS.

Hastings Furniture Service (HFS) has been reusing furniture collected from donors throughout Hastings and Rother since 1988, reducing waste and helping people with low incomes to create safe comfortable homes at rates they can afford.

Other organisations will be joining the centre, including a new project that will help people with disabilities by reusing mobility aids and stair-lifts, goods from the Hastings & Bexhill Wood Recycling Project and Bexhill College will be running motor repair training in the former MOT and servicing workshops.

Their new store opened in the showroom at the end of last year. HFS runs a discount scheme for people who depend on means-tested benefits or working tax credits.

Westfield youngsters enjoy their new playground.

It might have been chilly, but that didn’t stop children in Westfield from wanting to try out their new play equipment. The youngsters were attending the grand opening of the new facility. Rother District Council was successful in securing £260,000 of funding from the £2m East Sussex County Council won from Government as part of the Play Pathfinder scheme. Young people across the district have been asking for more play facilities and we are delivering – several more play parks are due to be redeveloped in the coming months. After the Westfield ceremony everyone was invited back to the parish hall for

Spare furniture? We’ll take it

Shifting furniture at HFS.

Girls Gettin’ Active

If you have furniture or electrical appliances in reusable condition that you no longer need please call HFS Bexhill on 01424 223594.

tea and cakes courtesy of the local playgroup.

Did you know? Rother District Council is working with other parish councils to deliver new play equipment to communities. Already new facilities have been opened in Pebsham and Robertsbridge too, with more planned for Etchingham, Battle and Bexhill.

More fun, physical activities are becoming available to residents all the time, so visit and search what’s available in your local area.

Young people share ideas for the future

What do you want Rother to look like in twenty years time?

60 or over? Then swim for free

Residents simply need to show up at one of our public pools with a passport or driving licence to show their age.

Swimming is becoming increasingly popular as it is a low-impact sport with proven health benefits.

PEOPLE aged 60 and over in Rother have been making a splash now they can swim for free.

The young people took part in a series of ‘hands on’ workshops to choose the things they would most like to see if they could create their ideal town.

As well as helping you stay fit and active, swimming in Rother also offers a strong social scene with many of the people who take part forging lasting friendships.

A skate park, shops, places to work and health care facilities topped the list for the youngsters.

The Council agreed to pick up any funding shortfall in the Government initiative so the scheme could go ahead.

To make things even easier, leisure pool contractors Freedom Leisure are offering an identity card. For just £2 you can purchase the card and not have to bother with the hassle of taking documents along with you to claim your free swim.

For more information visit

That was the question posed to secondary school children from across the district when they met at Bexhill High School. The event formed part of the consultation on Rother’s Core Strategy – the document which will shape the area in the future.

Consultation on the strategy is now closed, but visit for more information. VIEWS magazine


Something for everyone at new look museum

p Curator Julian Porter t Internal view of Bexhill Museum

Pebsham Countryside Park A green space for all Plans for a countryside park between Bexhill and Hastings are moving forward.


from European funding and close partnership with French organisations.

The park will develop and enhance the green space between Hastings, Bexhill and Crowhurst, an area of approximately 600 hectares (1480 acres).

It is hoped the scheme will provide a network of paths, recreational space and sports facilites in the land between the two towns, while conserving the unique environment.

The Pebsham Countryside Park Management Board is encouraging community groups to get involved in the project.

The project is a joint initiative between Rother District Council, Hastings Borough Council, East Sussex County Council and Crowhurst Parish Council.

The park is still in the early stages of development. It is part of a series of developments in East Sussex and northern France which have benefited

The northern area of the park has SSSI (Site of Special Scientific Interest) status and will remain largely as it is today, offering visitors the chance to enjoy the

Bexhill Museum is set to be bigger and better than before.

The museum will benefit from a cuttingedge extension block created as part of the redevelopment.

The new-look building will open to the public after refurbishment complete with more space, interactive exhibitions and new displays.

The new building will now be able to accommodate the Bexhill Costume Museum, previously housed in Manor Gardens. It will also enable many articles and artefacts, that have up until now been held in storage because of a lack of display space, to be made available for visitors to enjoy.

‘Views’ readers have been granted an exclusive sneak peak behind the scenes of the project. The works, which will cost a total of £1.9m, have been funded by Rother District Council (£0.7m) and the Heritage Lottery Fund (£0.9m). The Society of Bexhill Museums has also raised £250,000 which together with other public donations will go towards the cost of the internal fitting out.

The museum will feature a costume and fashion gallery, motor racing and technology gallery, education room and visitor refreshment area. An archive room with moveable cabinets will grant the museum more storage space.

Curator Julian Porter said: “Visitors will find the museum different because it’s now offering something for the whole family. We’ll have the natural history in one gallery, the costume museum in another and the cars. People expect to see actual cars as part of Bexhill’s motoring heritage, which is something that hasn’t been on offer in the town in the past. We’ll have all the ‘interactives’ as well. “With more things to see and somewhere now where you can get something to eat and go to the toilet, the museum will be a place where you can spend a large chunk of the day, rather than just an hour. We will work alongside the De La Pavilion as the town’s other cultural offer – anything they don’t do, hopefully we will.” Look out for more details in the local press about the museum’s opening date.

natural beauty of the valley and view wildlife with minimal impact on the habitat which is so important to preserve. The southern section of the park could offer a variety of active recreation opportunities including adventure play and sport. A Friends of the Pebsham group is being created to give organisations a say in the plans. If you are interested in becoming a Friend of Pebsham, send an e-mail to James Waite at Rother District Council on or for more information visit VIEWS magazine


A Day at the Beach

It’s one of the busiest seaside attractions in the country with an average of 25,000 visitors every weekend in summer. Residents and tourists flock to Camber for its sandy beaches and shallow water. Thousands of people with different interests, from kite surfing to picnicking, enjoying themselves on a site of special scientific interest over three miles long, requires a special kind of management – that’s where Rother coastal control officer Rob Cass and his team step in. Rob Cass

Rob and his colleagues are employed by Rother District Council to manage and control activities on the beach. And they face a long list of challenges. “We enforce the byelaws, look after health and safety, find missing children, give first aid, liaise on search and rescue with the coastguard, look after security … you’re everything from a social worker to a car parking attendant,” said Rob. But all of those challenges are met to ensure residents and visitors can enjoy Camber in a safe and fun environment. Each summer support arrives in the shape of temporary staff ready for the busy summer season. The team have worked hard to create solutions to problems thrown up by the sheer volume of visitors. A close working relationship has been built with the police to make sure summer fun isn’t ruined by a small minority. The Council has helped to fund an additional police presence on the beach during peak times. Missing children are quickly reunited with parents using the wristband system which the team brought in two years ago.

“Ultimately the job is about making sure people get on the beach safely, making sure they have an enjoyable day and getting them home again safely. If you achieve that you’re happy.” 8

“It has saved us huge amounts of time,” said Rob. “Most children are now reunited with their families inside forty minutes. With such a large beach and so many people it does unfortunately happen, but we make a point of showing people the wristbands and encouraging them to take one and write their contact details when they are funnelled on to the beach. The bands are coloured for a beach area and have our phone number on them.” The service is seven days a week and Rob has been at Camber for the last five years. He said: “It’s a job of extremes. Often you’ll come home exhausted. Everyone here is just as important as me, from the ladies in the kiosks to the people who help stack the cars when it’s busy. “Ultimately the job is about making sure people get on the beach safely, making sure they have an enjoyable day and getting them home again safely. If you achieve that you’re happy.”

VIEWS magazine


Shop owners get talking Sixty Six Enterprise and part-funded by us. Representatives from local and national organisations such as Business Link, Booker, Train to Gain and the 1066 Federation of Small Businesses were in attendance, along with local producers and over 35 traders.

Josephine Fairley of Judges Bakery.

Over 80 people talked shop at a special meeting in Battle. The Village Shops Forum was organised by the Council to provide support for rural stores and post offices.

The forum featured talks and presentations by business experts and provided an opportunity for shop owners to network. The evening also saw the launch of a business support scheme run by Ten

A range of initiatives exist to help people in Rother who are struggling in the current economic climate. The Citizens Advice Bureau is well equipped to provide assistance thanks to increased support of £70,000 from the Council. We are offering a programme of support for village shops and small rural businesses through 1066 Enterprise; including one-to-one mentoring and a networking group. By working in partnership with other organisations £250,000 has been secured to provide enhanced housing advice to local communities. Benefits applications can now be processed within two working days


if claimants provide all the necessary documentation thanks to our new fasttrack system. The Council has conducted a survey to identify the people entitled to a 25 per cent discount on their Council Tax. We are also encouraging small businesses to apply for the rate relief they are entitled to.

Summer might be here, but that’s not stopping plenty of people from claiming free or discounted insulation for their homes through the East Sussex Energy Partnership (ESEP).

The meeting received presentations from Kerry Kyriacou of Business Link, Hilary Knight from A Taste of Sussex and Josephine Fairley of the award winning Judges Bakery and Green & Blacks Organic Chocolate.

The ESEP was formed between the district and borough authorities of East Sussex, including Rother, to provide government funded grants to help homeowners save energy and cut costs.

By having a selection of local produce from Judges Bakery, Great Park Farm, Stonelink Farm, Carr Taylor Wines Ltd and Northiam Dairy available at the forum, it was hoped that connections between producers and shops would be strengthened with the ultimate goal of introducing more local products to local stores.

Effective wall or loft insulation can save up to £350 a year.

Over 40 ‘Shop Rother, Shop Local’ reusable shopping bags were given away to shop owners.

Even if you don’t meet the criteria, you could still be eligible for a discount. Many people qualify and

Struggling with money? We might be able to help We know that times are tight – that’s why we’re doing all we can to help Rother residents and businesses through the recession.

Save money and help the environment

Continued investment in tourism, regeneration projects and affordable homes shows that we are doing as much as possible to help our residents weather the storm. If you think Rother District Council can help you in any way contact 01424 787000 or visit

There are also limited grants available for solar powered heating systems. These steps may be free if you meet the eligibility criteria of being either over 60, claiming working tax credits with children under 16 or disabled or chronically ill.

it’s easy to apply. Tina Gurden and her family received assistance on cavity wall insulation. She said: “It was really quick and easy to do. The surveyor came to have a look and a couple of weeks later we had our appointment. “We wanted to insulate the walls before doing any other work to the house but doing it privately would have taken too long. My husband found out about this scheme on the internet and got the information we needed – everything happened very quickly. “The house can get quite cold in winter and we always have the heating on, so this will keep us warm and save money. It’s good for the environment too.” Contact the call centre on 0800 980 0901 where operators will give you advice about access to grants and discounts or go to the website Limited funding available, terms and conditions apply.

Cavity wall insulation being fitted.

Keeping Rother beautiful Rother is statistically one of the cleanest places in the UK – but we can still make it better. Isolated pockets of fly-tipping, graffiti, litter and shabby buildings will be targeted with the Council’s ‘Sense of Place’ scheme. The six-month pilot will look to improve the street scene across the district. We have employed more staff to help with the project, a local environment quality co-ordinator and an enforcement officer. Rother, working in conjunction with East Sussex County Council, is aiming to reduce untidy buildings and land by 25 per cent and oversee a 50 per cent reduction in fly-tipping, fly-posting, graffiti, litter, dog fouling and shabby road signs. Fly-tipping can be reported to the Council on 01424 787000 or through the report a fault facility at VIEWS magazine


One of Rother’s best loved parks is in line for a face lift. We have decided to spend £1million to regenerate the beautiful and historic Egerton Park. Plans for the park include a play zone for children and young teenagers, a kiosk to manage games and provide information, an enhanced boating lake and better access. The scheme should improve the park for current users and draw more people in.

The rejuvenation and conservation of the park, created in the late 1800’s by John Webb, has been identified as a priority by the Council. Up until the mid 20th century, the park was a main centre for entertainment, with sporting events, theatrical and musical performances being held on a regular basis. Recently the Friends of Egerton Park, the Children’s Centre and Churches Together have held a number of events aiming to

reinstate the park’s status as a venue for cultural events and activities. Richard Wheeler vice chairman of the friends of Egerton Park said: “The park is a very valuable amenity. £1million gives us the opportunity to refresh the various areas which need it.” For more information on Egerton Park visit our website: or contact parks development officer Rebecca Owen on 01424 787000.

Did you know? Egerton Park is just one of Rother’s corporate priority projects. Others include the widening of the A21 at Marley Lane, Battle, to attract industry and provide new jobs, the regeneration of Bexhill seafront, £4m for new sea defences at Fairlight and redeveloping Sidley Goods Yard. To find out about these and more visit


VIEWS magazine


What’s on June Saturday 14 – Sunday 15 Special Rose Weekend Pashley Manor Gardens Saturday 14 – Wednesday 18 Kipling Week Batemans

Saturday 12 Outdoor Theatre – Robert Louis Stevenson’s ‘Treasure Island’ Bodiam Castle Sunday 20 Rye Raft Race Saturday 26 Bexhill Carnival Saturday 26 – Sunday 27 Jacobean Weekend Batemans

Sunday 3 Rye Maritime Festival

Monday 28 – Saturday 2 August Ladies’ Bowls Tournament Bexhill

Monday 4 – Saturday 9 Men’s Bowls Tournament Bexhill Wednesday 6 – Sunday 10 Flower festival Batemans Saturday 23 – Monday 25 Jour De Fete De La Warr Pavilion, Bexhill

Sunday 15 Outdoor theatre – JM Barrie’s ‘Peter Pan’ Bodiam Castle

Monday 25 Bexhill 100 Classic Car Show

Sunday 22 Bexhill Rowing Regatta

July Every weekend in July 1066 Falconry, 1066 Battle of Hastings Abbey and Battlefield Friday 4 – Sunday 13 Bexhill Festival of Music De La Warr Pavilion

Saturday 2 Outdoor theatre – Shakespeare’s, ‘The Merry Wives of Windsor’ Bodiam Castle

Stand on the site where the course of our history changed forever! Step through the gates of Battle Abbey to discover one of the most famous dates in history, 1066 Battle of Hastings. Interactive exhibits, dramatic film and a fascinating audio tour place you at the heart of the action. Take part in exciting events taking place throughout the summer as detailed above. Explore the abbey ruins, walk the battlefield or enjoy the themed children’s play area for a great day out you’ll never forget! For more information go to or call 01424 775705.

Saturday 13 – Sunday 28 Rye Arts Festival

Friday 1 – Sunday 3 Lily Weekend Pashley Manor Gardens





Saturday 20 – Sunday 21 Anglo Continental Market Bexhill For more information go to

One lucky VIEWS reader will win a family ticket to 1066 Battle of Hastings, the Abbey and Battlefield which can be used anytime before August 31 2009. To enter, simply answer the question: Who won the 1066 Battle of Hastings?

A King Harold B William the Conqueror C Henry III Send your answers by July 17 2009 to Views Magazine, Rother District Council, Town Hall, Bexhill TN39 3JX or email

Art for all generations at the De La Warr Pavilion July 4 to September 27. Free admission. Works by German artist Joseph Beuys (1921 – 86) from the Artist Rooms collection will be shown throughout the summer of 2009 at the De La Warr Pavilion. This is an exciting and fitting opportunity to show work by Beuys within a building whose architecture, like the work of the artist, is rooted in socialist ideals and whose purpose is to provide a cultural centre for its locality and beyond.

between senior citizens and young people, bringing a community together whilst inviting expertise and commentators from the fields of philosophy, environment, politics, economics and art.

The exhibition will explore Beuys’s ideas on economics, politics, activism, antiestablishment, teaching, learning and philosophy and raise questions as to how these ideas have extended beyond Beuys’s own lifetime and how they can continue to inform new thinking today.

The Artist Rooms is a collection of international contemporary art established through one of the largest and most imaginative gifts of art ever made to museums in Britain. The gift was made by Anthony d’Offay, with the assistance of the National Heritage Memorial Fund, The Art Fund and the Scottish and British Governments. Artist Rooms is jointly owned and managed by National Galleries of Scotland and Tate on behalf of the nation with the primary aim of creating a new national resource of contemporary art that will strengthen displays and create exhibitions in museums and galleries throughout the UK so as to inspire new audiences, especially young people. The collection is being shared with museums and galleries throughout the UK with thanks to the support of independent charity The Art Fund.

An ambition of the Beuys exhibition is to initiate inter-generational discussion

For more information call 01424 229111 or visit

This exhibition will display a large number of sculptures, photographs, drawings, and watercolours as well as a selection of posters recalling live actions and events by Beuys. Key works will include Fat Chair (sculpture, 1964 – 85), Scala Napoletana (sculpture, 1985) and A Party for Animals (lithograph, 1969).

Did you know? Rother District Council contributes over £500,000 of funding a year to the pavilion’s charitable trust, with Arts Council England also providing an annual subsidy of over £500,000. Last year was the pavilion’s most successful since reopening in 2005 following a £9m refurbishment. Successful exhibitions and live auditorium programmes included the ‘Unpopular Culture’ exhibition curated by artist Grayson Perry and sell out performances by Jose Gonzalez, Lee Evans and Goldfrapp. VIEWS magazine


Rother Views Magazine - Issue 02  

Rother Views is a magazine aimed at residents of the Rother District in East Sussex.

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