Forward St Leonards Community Development Trust

St Leonards on Sea1 St Leonards Warrior Square2 St Leonards Gardens3 St Leonards Bathing Pool site4 Visiting St Leonards5 Burton St Leonards6 Marine Court - Art Deco Landmark7 Livingin St Leonards8
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Forward St Leonards: a new vision for delivering an outstanding 21st century town

Forward St Leonards is a social enterprise and community development organisation which seeks to harness the unique character and heritage of St Leonards on Sea to create an outstanding 21st century destination to live, work and visit. For most of its history, St Leonards on Sea has been a thriving and high-quality destination, built on the vision of founders and architects James and Decimus Burton. Only in recent decades has St Leonards become notorious for and synonymous with deprivation and the many social and economic problems associated with it.

Forward St Leonards seeks to move our town on from the cycle of deprivation that has dominated it for the last 30 years and – drawing inspiration from that original vision and the unique character and heritage of the area – to once again create an outstanding 21st century destination that embraces and celebrates quality, innovation and creativity.

Our approach

We will seek to promote, support and facilitate high-quality, sustainable and innovative community based development for St Leonards on Sea, to include the areas covered by the four wards within the Hastings Borough Council area of Central St Leonards, West St Leonards, Gensing and Maze Hill. We specifically look to support enterprising and innovative projects that can harness the skills of the local community in new ways and seeks to tackle entrenched problems from the ground up, rather than through large-scale, capital intensive or ‘showcase’ regeneration projects.

Although not a dedicated heritage organisation, we want to help to preserve and enhance the best of the current built environment within the St Leonards area – such as Burton St Leonards, Gensing Gardens, the Marine Quarter and Warrior Square, so as to ensure that all future development builds on the original vision of the founders of St Leonards reinterpreted to the demands and available technology of the new century.

Our priorities

Principal among the areas we are seeking to develop new projects will be to facilitate the development of the derelict West St Leonards Bathing Pool site into a thriving mixed use neighbourhood via the formation of a new Community Land Trust; develop projects to tackle the poor state of local housing stock – especially in the Private Rented Sector – and; develop a distractive tourism and visitor offer that will attract sustainable inward investment into the town.

This website outlines some of the areas we are actively or looking to work in. It is not complete or all-encompassing, but rather provide a framework of ideas and a range of starting points to get us moving forward. We would be pleased to hear from anyone who is interested in getting involved – or who has other ideas or project that compliment or enhance our objectives.


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Forward St Leonards Limited, 11 Marine Court, St Leonards on Sea TN38 0DX. Company limited by guarentee no: 08488308
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. Banner image © Carol @ FiftyOneHundred. Photography © Clive Gross.

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