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Osborne finds £2M for fire-damaged Eastbourne pier

The government has pledged £2M to help get Eastbourne pier back into action after the devastating fire earlier this week.

It also announced 10 other coastal projects that will share £8.5M, as well as pledging a further £3M for future schemes.

A third of Eastbourne Pier was destroyed when a blaze broke out on Wednesday afternoon behind some wood panelling in its historic arcade building.

Chancellor George Osborne said: “Eastbourne Pier is a much loved local attraction and this fire is devastating news.

“I am therefore delighted to be able to provide financial support so we can minimise the effect on business and tourism.

“We will work with Eastbourne as a matter of urgency to ensure that the funding is provided without delay so people can start enjoying the pier again.”

Meanwhile the government said the £8.5M distributed through its Coastal Communities Fund would attract a further £6.2M from elsewhere.

Projects will include £1.75M to revitalise the Victorian Arches at the heart of Point Battery, in Portsmouth, providing work and exhibition space.

More than £1M will be spent repairing, improving and promoting the South West Coastal Path.

In excess of £600,000 will be invested in the construction of a system of flood defences for homes and businesses in the flood area on the River Deben Estuary in Suffolk.

Coastal communities minister Penny Mordaunt said: “Our Coastal Communities Fund is bringing about some really innovative projects around the country and schemes that will make a big difference to those towns affected by the winter storms.

“Seaside towns are a strong part of this country’s heritage and have huge potential to create new businesses that provide jobs. They are an important part of the government’s long-term economic plan and we are determined to help these communities reach their true potential.”

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