A huge donation of £50,000 from Brighton Seafront Regeneration and Soho House has pushed the Madeira Terraces crowdfunder above target.
The developer, who is planning to revamp the Aquarium Terraces, made the pledge this afternoon, bringing the total raised to £466,074 – significantly more than the £421,000 target.
Last month, Brighton and Hove City Council leader Warren Morgan wrote to them asking for an urgent update into how the development is progressing after months of inactivity at the site since planning permission was granted in 2015.
But although nothing has yet happened at that end of Madeira Drive, the company has made a sizeable donation to help regenerate the other end of the road.
Council leader Warren Morgan said: “Our target has been hit and passed by a huge amount. Thank you to everyone who pledged, supported, fundraised and backed the campaign.
Tomorrow we will begin the process of applying for the Heritage Lottery Fund grant and getting things underway.
“It’s not over and there is a long way to go, but without this we couldn’t make progress as we will be able to now.”
Nick Jones, Founder & CEO of Soho House said: “Helping with the Save Madeira Terrace fund was important for us as part of the future of the seafront. Over the last year we’ve been getting to know the creative community in Brighton. We’re looking forward to seeing the area returned to its former glory, with the iconic arches restored, so we can create a House that works for them.”
Niraj Dattani, Head of Partnerships, at the council’s crowdfunding partner Spacehive added: “The Save Madeira Terrace campaign has been the biggest campaign we’ve ever seen and it has been fantastic to see how it’s brought the city together. With over 2100 backers and many more raffle tickets bought by the public, the campaign has generated civic pride on a huge scale.
“This enthusiasm has been matched by Brighton’s business community, who have pledged tens of thousands of pounds to the campaign. The campaign also demonstrates the council’s pioneering approach to engaging with and delivering for its communities.
“The Madeira Terrace campaign shows what’s possible when everyone comes together to improve the city. Brighton is full of creativity and passion, and working with everyone involved has been amazing.”
Also donating this morning was Steve Coogan, who pledged a slightly more modest £300.
With this money, the council will start the first phase of restoring the terraces, which it’s estimated will cost a total of £24million.
This money, together with another £1million from the council, will be used to restore at three arches to demonstrate how all 151 could be used.
This in turn will provide a strong basis to apply for more grants from sources such as the Heritage Lottery Fund or the Coastal Communities Fund.