On the southern edge of the Beacon Hill nature reserve is an 18 hole pitch and putt golf course which has fallen into disuse after it became uneconomic for the former lease holder to sustain as a viable business. The land belongs to Brighton & Hove City Council. In the south east corner of the golf course (near to the windmill) is a building which had previously been used as a café, toilets and golf kiosk.
Friends of Beacon Hill have proposed to the council that we take over the lease – that the land be absorbed such that it is a contiguous part of the nature reserve – and that we should be allowed to re-develop the existing building as a ‘hub’ for community and educational use in relation to the ecology of the nature reserve and local beaches. To this end we are registering a Community Intereset Company and intend to create a classroom/exhibition space thus generating income through the activities of various groups utilising the facilities on offer.
We believe that the location offers a natural gateway into the South Downs National Park and potentially, a focal point and centre of excellence for the local (UNESCO) Biosphere initiative. A short bus ride from the centre of Brighton, the ‘Beacon Hub’ (working title) will offer a unique opportunity for local people of all ages to engage with and learn about wildlife, heritage and the environment.
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