BEACON HILL

BID FOR SEEDA SMALL RURAL TOWNS PROGRAMME
in partnership with
HASLEMERE INITIATIVE

Overview

The ward of Beacon Hill & Hindhead (hereon referred to as Beacon Hill) is a small village of 4,000 residents and about 1,600 homes. It is an area of extreme financial variation, housing wealthy stockbrokers as well as homes on income support. The village has a very successful primary school with over 180 children.

Developing business in the village is hard, but experienced operators have survived economic downturns and the ups and downs of small village life. Retail shops rely on the locals support – but they do so through high standards of service and niche marketing. There is a strong community feel and plenty of enthusiasm to see the village succeed in a tough but vigorous trading environment.

There is a strong sports vision in the community through the use of Hindhead Playing Fields, which is privately owned and held in trust to the benefit of the residents. All age groups use the fields for football, cricket and other sporting events. The recently redeveloped pavilion is an example of strong local drive for excellence.

Current and recent projects are as follows :-
Project Cost Status Funding
Sports Pavilion £150,000 Complete grants/loans
Redevelopment of Royal British Legion Site £30,000 Ongoing Fund Raising
Refurbishment of the 1906 Parish Church £150,000 Ongoing Donations
Redevelopment of the United Reformed Church £250,000 Planned Donations
Refurbishments of Beacon Hill School £400,000 Planned Sale of Land
Replace Beacon Hill School swimming pool £100,000 Committee Fund Raising

The projects outlined fit in with the Health Check in particular economic development of Beacon Hill. The projects identified have been proposed through well-attended meetings that have been forthright, honest and driven with enthusiasm. Many of them are developing through fund raising, loans and support grants.

It is clear to see from these projects alone that there is a strong drive in the village to see it prosper and Beacon Hill fits in well with the SEEDA Rural Towns Program. These proposals are targeted at two in particular of SEEDA's Economic Outputs, the Safeguarding of jobs and Improved rural community infrastructure. The two issues are interlinked in that the proposals seek to protect the local economy specifically by improving the local infrastructural provision. Because the School is at the heart of the village, road safety issues for the children are combined with safety issues around the shops. They are, after all, next door and across the road from one another.

Strong support has been shown for this project from a good cross-section of the Beacon Hill community, including the School, religious leaders, elected representatives at all levels, local residents and in particular from the local traders.

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