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News - 11 July 2005

Letter to the editor: Brighton needs to unite for long-term wins

The Olympics coming to London will indeed be good news for Brighton, that’s if the City and it's institutions can get their act together.

The issues are well aired each month in the local press and with local businesses. However, there is a lesson and a challenge that London's success brings to Brighton.

The lesson is that only by working together as a team and for the greater good of the City can Brighton advance. A year ago London's bid was at best seen with scepticism and at worst with ridicule. The population of London was not behind the bid, but through the involvement of all sectors in the community and moreover leadership and vision London gained momentum and ultimately achieved its goals.

The challenge that London's success brings to Brighton is more worrying in my view. The East End is about to be transformed, new facilities, new hotels and the momentum that the Olympics will bring mean that East London will, post Olympics, have the facilities and the gravitas to attract conference business that Brighton should be winning.

Yes it would be great to have a national team using Brighton as it's base, but that is the short term win. In the long term investment decisions are needed now to ensure that Brighton remains an attractive and convenient destination. Should we be sitting here in 2012 with the existing Brighton Centre, a vacant Black Rock site, still without an Olympic size swimming pool, no real progress in the expansion of the number and quality of hotel rooms, and struggling with transport issues a resurgent London will have no difficulty in picking up the business that Brighton should have been competing for.

We have six years to change things, that is not much time.

Nick Ellis - Principal

Nick Ellis & Co

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Ellis, Nick

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