Civic Centre brought council together

Sydney Little opens Adur Civic Centre in September 1980
Sydney Little opens Adur Civic Centre in September 1980

TALK of the closure of Adur Civic Centre prompted Beverley Rousset to send in this photograph of the opening in 1980.

It shows her father, Cllr Sydney Little, who was chairman of the council.

He is seen officially opening the Civic Centre, with Beverley’s mother Doris beside him.

“My father is now 95 and although his health is failing, he still remembers this day with pride.

“Those Sea Cadets and Cub Scouts must be in their 40s now!”

Beverley now lives in Commugny in Switzerland, but she keeps up with Shoreham news via our website.

In September 27, 1980, a ceremony took place with music by the band of the Lancing branch of the Royal British Legion.

Chairman of the council, Sydney Little, declared the Civic Centre open, then the Rev Martin Sheppard offered prayers.

Mr Little then unveiled a plaque commemorating the opening and refreshments followed.

Beverley Rousset, Mr Little’s daughter, said as well as being chairman, he was councillor for Kingston Buci for nearly 30 years, from the early 1970s to the late 1990s.

Prior to the Civic Centre, there were offices at five different locations within the district, but on December 19, 1978, officers were instructed to arrange for the new building.

In April 1979, the contract was agreed and construction began, with a view to completion in August 1980.

The overal time for design and construction was 100 weeks, and the actual construction time was 68 weeks. The final cost fell within the original contact sum of £2.4million.

The Civic Centre comprised three storeys totalling 63,000 sq ft and was designed to accomodate 205 staff, as well as providing a Council Chamber.