Eastbourne Borough Council is calling on the government to establish a new fund that will help maintain heritage assets in the UK.

The council is spending £750,000 on the Bandstand over the coming months to get the venue open again in 2023, but the longer-term list of repairs will cost many millions to complete.

At a meeting of Full Council, councillors supported a call for the government to set up a heritage maintenance fund that would give councils the resources needed to cover the significant costs of repairing and restoring historical monuments.

Councillor David Tutt, Leader of Eastbourne Borough Council, said: “We used to receive an annual grant from the government to fund local services, in 2010 it was over £10 million, but the government reduced and finally stopped all grant funding, meaning that cumulatively we’ve lost about £75 million that would’ve otherwise been invested in our town.

“This is why Councillor Burton tabled this amendment calling on the government to create a new fund for these important old buildings and asking our MP, Caroline Ansell, to lobby her government colleagues on our behalf.”

The council decision to spend £750,000 on essential repairs to the Bandstand, also had to take into consideration the Environment Agency’s £100 million flagship seafront project to protect the town from flooding.

Councillor Helen Burton said: “Rising sea levels mean that the town will flood unless flood defences are built and I’m very grateful to the Environment Agency for spearheading this vital work.

“However, we do not yet know how this long-term project will impact different areas of the seafront, including the promenade around the Bandstand, so it would be reckless to spend any more than the £750,000 at this time.”

For more information on the coastal management scheme, please visit consult.environment-agency.gov.uk/solent-and-south-downs/pevensey-bay-to-eastbourne