£2.5m of further investment into East Sussex secured from the UK Community Renewal Fund

Set to receive a multi-million-pound funding following a range of successful bids into the UK Community Renewal Fund, East Sussex County Council will receive £2,518,187 from the UK Government through the UK Community Renewal Fund, going towards five projects in the county.

Target outcomes include the safeguarding 300 full-time jobs and offering 470 participants skills and employment support, and a substantial increase in visitor numbers in the county.

Cllr Rupert Simmons, lead member for economy at East Sussex County Council, said:

“This funding is fantastic news and I’m delighted that the government has recognised the value of these projects, which will support the people and communities most in need in East Sussex.

“These projects are investing in our people, our places and our local businesses, and will be vital to helping our economy to grow and our communities to flourish as we recover from the challenges faced during the pandemic.


The Hastings 2066 Initiative – £636,173

The project will allow people to discover artistry and history with a new Immersive Studio and digital overlay. Visitors will be able to explore the town through its ‘Digital Twin’ using virtual reality technology using the latest Augmented Reality technology without needing to leave home.

Voluntary Community and Socal Enterpise (VCSE) Futureproofing Initiative (Building Community Connections) – £100,100

Led by Hastings Voluntary Action, this project aims to create a “Whole System” approach to volunteering in the town and to reform service access to meet the needs of the most vulnerable in the community.

Lewes District Council, in partnership with Plumpton College, the South Downs National Park Authority and Sussex Modern – £705,000

Launching a high-impact tourism campaign including pilots and research to create a global brand for wine and cultural tourism. The project will be delivered in the Lewes district with a focus on growing high-quality and sustainable tourism.

Minding the Gaps – £547,627

A partnership pilot working across Lewes, Hastings, Wealden and Rother, aims to support participants into employment by addressing the gaps in the current employment, learning and skills support provision in these four areas.

Innovation Masters Programme – £529,287

An East Sussex wide project that will improve the productivity of the county’s micro-business community through masterclasses, workshops and roadshows.

Cllr Simmons added:

“We are currently awaiting further details from the government on our grant funding obligations. Once we receive this information, we will be working proactively with the successful bidders to ensure their projects can move forward swiftly and be delivered by the Government’s extended delivery date of June 30, 2022.”

The UK Community Renewal Fund is a UK Government programme for 2021/22. This aims to support people and communities most in need across the UK to pilot programmes and new approaches to prepare for the UK Shared Prosperity Fund. It invests in skills, community and place, local business, and supporting people into employment.

For more information, visit: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/uk-community-renewal-fund-prospectus

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“Congratulations to all the successful projects.”

Cllr Rupert SimmonsLead member for economy

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