The Beacon Hub Brighton project (not to be confused with ‘Friends of Beacon Hill’ - an entirely separate organisation!), is a registered charitable incorporated organisation led by an enthusiastic team of local volunteers, which has been granted a fifteen year rent free lease to redevelop the redundant golf pavilion adjacent to Rottingdean windmill as an ‘Eco-education & Visitor Centre’.
To achieve its goal, the project’s intent is to create a purpose built facility based on the footprint and roof-line of the original building, plus an outdoor teaching area. This will offer exciting opportunities for ad-hoc visitors and organised school groups of all ages and abilities to learn about and connect with nature, ecology, marine biology, local heritage, the arts, geology, astronomy, renewable energy... the list goes on!
Common blue butterfly photo by Peter Whitcomb
For the last eighteen months a wonderful group of hard-working and dedicated volunteers has run a community café/ kiosk and preliminary education programme at the ‘Hub’. The project has attracted support from BBC wildlife broadcaster Chris Packham, secured the lease on the building from Brighton & Hove City Council and permission from the South Downs National Park Authority to redevelop the building. In the longer term, an extensive programme of age and curriculum relevant activities for visiting school parties will be lead by professional educators.
The Hub as a Visitor Centre, will also act as a ‘gateway’ to the national park, within whose boundaries it stands - offering interpretation displays and a multi- purpose exhibition space. It will also be available to hire as a meeting room, lectures theatre, etc by local community groups. In the interim, funding will be sought for the redevelopment and equipment, with a crowd-funding initiative to be launched in the near future.
The fabulous location on the Beacon Hill Nature Reserve allows easy access by foot, public transport and bicycle. As a condition of the lease, Beacon Hub Brighton is required to offer public toilet facilities and the car park is now open to visitors during café/kiosk opening hours (Thurs - Sat 10am - 3pm, Sun 11am - 4pm) after the recent installation of a new gate & height restriction bar at the A259 (seafront) entrance.
Please drop by the Hub and support the charity by buying a cup of tea or coffee and cake - you’re assured of a warm welcome! You might also be interested in purchasing a specially designed 2018 fund-raising calendar featuring stunning photos of local views - priced at just £8, also available from the Rottingdean Arts Café and Ovingdean shop, with all funds raised going to the Beacon Hub charity. If you would like to volunteer and help run the café/kiosk or make a donation, please Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
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