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The Observer Building, Hastings (Phase 1a)


Approval Status


Fully Approved

Delivery Status


Construction In Progress

Expected Repayment Date


Spring 2026

The project will support the full redevelopment of the 4,000 sqm Observer Building in Hastings, which has been empty and increasingly derelict for 35 years, into a highly productive mixed-use building, creating new homes, jobs and enterprise space.

The Observer Building will include leisure and retail uses on the lower three floors, a wide range of workspaces including studios, offices and open space, 16 capped-rent flats and a public roof terrace and bar with sea, castle and town views.

The scale, ambition and connectivity of this community-led local redevelopment will help to transform the fortunes of the immediate area and the wider Hastings town centre.

£1,750,000 Growing Places Fund funding was awarded to bring forward the first phase of the redevelopment of the Observer Building.

An additional Growing Places Fund allocation of £1,616,500 was allocated to the project by the Accountability Board on 2 July 2021. This funding will be used to secure full renovation of the lower four floors of the building, essential works to the entire external shell of the building and internal mechanical and electrical works required to enable delivery of the proposed residential development.

This will bring the total Growing Places Fund to £3,366,500.

Investment in the Observer Building, Hastings

The Observer Building project has also been allocated £1.713m from the Getting Building Fund (Observer Building, Hastings (Phase 1b)) in order to support the renovation of the lower four floors of the building. Phases 1a and 1b of the project will be brought forward to the same delivery timetable.

Capital Programme delivery update

Take a look at our update on the delivery of the Local Growth Fund (LGF) and Growing Places Fund (GPF) capital programmes.

SELEP Capital Investment Programme

Growing Places Fund

The Growing Places Fund (GPF) was established by the Ministry for Housing, Communities and Local Government (formerly the Department for Communities and Local Government) and the Department for Transport (DfT) in 2011. The aim of this funding is to unlock economic growth, create jobs and ‘kick-start’ house building at stalled development sites.

The GPF was made available to SELEP for investment as a recyclable loan scheme. Loan repayment schedules for each project are agreed within the credit agreement which is put in place at the start of the project. Repayments against these projects are returned to the central pot for reallocation to new projects. Through the GPF Round 1 awards, a total of £47.459m GPF was awarded to 13 capital infrastructure projects across the South East LEP area. Repayments are now being made by the Round 1 projects which has allowed funding totalling £20.387m to be allocated to a further 13 projects through GPF Rounds 2 and 3.
Funding value: £3,366,500
Total Project cost: £8,396,000
Return to Capital Investment