An Agreement for Lease for La Vallette Kiosk and Amenities, one of six initial sites identified as part of the Seafront Enhancement Programme, has been signed between the States of Guernsey and Vive La Vallette LBG (‘VLV’), the Guernsey charity that will undertake the redevelopment of the site
The agreement means the redevelopment can move forward, transforming the kiosk and changing rooms into a more modern facility for the benefit of swimmers but importantly, also for a broader range of sports, arts and other community activities.
David Warr, Chair of Vive La Vallette said: “I am delighted that we have reached agreement with the States of Guernsey. This is a major milestone in helping our vision for the area become a reality, and opening it up to a wider range of community uses. It is an historic and iconic site in a prime location and we look forward to unlocking its full potential with the expressed intention of it being a community asset for this and future generations in which we can take pride.
“Our immediate task is to sign a contract for the redevelopment to allow work to begin whilst continuing to raise the necessary funds to meet the total costs which are anticipated to be c£1.5 million. Through a combination of the States of Guernsey and private sector support in excess of £800k has already been committed to the project. We are hopeful that work on site will start later this year and that Islanders will embrace the project and support us in our fundraising efforts.
“We are grateful for the faith which the States of Guernsey has shown in us and appreciative of their funding commitment. This project not only compliments the Government’s emphasis on Revive and Thrive but is an example of how a Public/Private initiative can work in practice”.
VLV were named the preferred party for La Vallette site in May 2019 following extensive public engagement during which the community were invited to submit proposals for what could and should be done to make the best use of all six sites. VLV have initially focused on plans for the kiosk, changing rooms and the adjoining mound area which they propose to upgrade and improve in a way that will allow it to be more widely used by a greater portion of the community. A significant proportion of the required funding will be raised through the private sector with the States of Guernsey also committing to contribute £300,000 to the project. The States of Guernsey will also undertake one off works over and above the current regular maintenance on the Ladies’ and Children’s Pools which includes improving the pool surround and is committed to continuing the current level of maintenance and cleaning of the pools.
Deputy Gavin St Pier, Chair of the Seafront Enhancement Area Steering Group said: “It’s taken longer than I would have liked to get to this point for a number of reasons, not least the pandemic this year. Investing in and improving our seafront is one of the big aims under the Revive and Thrive Strategy, and one of the ways that we can ensure we build back better both in terms of our economy and in the quality of life for Islanders. Even before the COVID-19 pandemic, it has been an ambition of this government to make real progress because we knew then that the seafront is an enormous asset that we can enhance and make better use of.
“The public really engaged with us when we first went to them with the six sites, asking for their ideas. It has been hard work to take those excellent suggestions and turn them into viable projects but signing the Agreement for Lease with Vive La Vallette is a big step. The States is committing funding to the project, to show that we are serious about investing in our seafront’s future, but the majority will come from other sources and I’m confident VLV will be able to sell their vision to supporters to raise the total sums needed. This is a great example of the States working together with the community, an approach which also underpins the Revive and Thrive recovery strategy”.