Town centre bandstand to go as £1.2million works begin

The bandstand in Worthing town centre will go as part of �1.2million works to improve the town's main shopping street
The bandstand in Worthing town centre will go as part of �1.2million works to improve the town's main shopping street

THE DAYS of Worthing town centre’s bandstand are numbered as work starts today on the revamp of Montague Place.

New covered seating and red brick paving will be laid as part of the £1.2million works to improve the town’s main shopping street.

But as part of the plans, the bandstand will be removed by West Sussex County Council contractors within four weeks.

Town centre manager Sharon Clarke said: “The paving is going to last 30 to 40 years and the bandstand is a cement structure and has a limited lifespan.

“During the consultation people wanted a performance area and the bandstand has never been that. The new plans will allow both covered seating and a performance area.”

The first phase of works will see Montague Place repaved, installation of the seating and performance space and ‘table-topping’ of Liverpool Gardens to better link it to the high street.

A test bed was laid in Montague Street last year, which identified the need for a different type of red brick, as the test bricks faded.

Works should be completed by June, with further phases to pedestrianise Montague Place and repave the rest of Montague Street to follow.

Total cost of the project is expected to reach £6million.

Worthing pier county councillor Michael Cloake said: “This is a really exciting time for Worthing and we will be monitoring progress closely. Workers will do their best to minimise disruption.

“I am pleased to have secured the political will and initial investment for this much needed regeneration work.”

The works have been long in the making, with the first designs drawn up in September 2013.

A consultation offered options of light or dark paving, with or without the bandstand.

Light paving and retaining the bandstand were the preferred options.

Red brick was incorporated into the design following concerns lodged with the Town Centre Initiative by Worthing Borough Council’s planning committee.

Lighter gray paving, as used in the test bed, will also be used.

What do you think? Will you miss the Bandstand? Let us know your thoughts.

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