REACTION: Is the £1.2m funding gap between Bognor and Littlehampton a ‘welcome improvement’?

Tony Dixon submitted the FOI request to Arun District Council ENGSUS00120130227103532
Tony Dixon submitted the FOI request to Arun District Council ENGSUS00120130227103532

News that Bognor projects got £1.2million more funding than those in Littlehampton has been hailed as a ‘welcome improvement’.

A Freedom of Information (FOI) request by former district councillor Tony Dixon showed the difference in the amount received by projects from Arun District Council in the last five years.

Last week we highlighted some of the key disparities in the funding.

Tony Dixon, speaking on behalf of the Bognor Regis Civic Society Committee, said: “Six years ago the Civic Society recognised Bognor Regis was being starved of investment and that is why we made the original FOI in February 2012.

“The first FOI revealed that in the ten year period 2002-03 to 2011-12, Bognor Regis received £1,321,869 (35 per cent) in funding from Arun District Council and Littlehampton £2,421,123 (65 per cent).

“There are some mistakes in the more recent FOI figures and there are a number of questions that arise. Even so, it is clear to see that there has been a welcome improvement in council investment in Bognor Regis.

“The Civic Society is pleased to note the council responded positively once it was found out and we hope to see fair and balanced investment in both towns going forward.”

Asked for a comment last week, a council spokesman said: “The council looks to make investments and improvements across the whole Arun district and prioritises accordingly, rather than handing out the same amount of funding to each town.

“Our focus is not on one town. As a council we are committed to making improvements and investments across the district as a whole.”

What did you say?

Writing on our Facebook page, Tony Keywood said: “As everyone is taking just five years how about the rest of the time when Littlehampton came out on top?”

Bognor town councillor Cllr Damien Enticott commented: “They need to listen to what the people want.”

Joseph Molnar said the funding difference was ‘absolutly fair’ but that ‘people need something to moan about after all’.

However Sally Hall said: “About time money was spent in Littlehampton town centre . Very few people shop there anymore because of lack of affordable shops .

“Overheard visitors voicing their disgust about the state of the town and how downhill Littlehampton has become. “Shame, Bognor High Street looks a lot more decent than Littlehampton.”

Click here to view the full set of figures.