Seaside towns regeneration fund to be extended

 
Hastings Pier A project to restore Hastings pier was among previous successful bidders for cash

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Seaside towns are being invited to bid for money from a £29m funding pot aimed at boosting deprived areas.

The government says its Coastal Communities Fund is being extended to 2014-15, due to rising marine revenue.

It is backed by revenue from offshore wind farms, tidal power and other marine activity.

Previous bids have included a project to make Wadebridge, Cornwall, Britain's first solar-powered town and a new harbour on Barra, in the Western Isles.

Chief Secretary to the Treasury Danny Alexander said the fund was "giving our seaside towns and villages a real chance to grow as the nation benefits from our marine resources".

He said the fund would help create hundreds of opportunities for local apprentices and support jobs and businesses in the areas.

Earlier this month, the Centre for Social Justice think tank warned that some seaside towns in England and Wales were stuck in a cycle of poverty and suffering "severe social breakdown".

Deprivation

And figures from the Office for National Statistics (ONS) this week suggested 25 out of 31 "larger" English seaside towns had above-average levels of deprivation, including Skegness, Blackpool, Clacton and Hastings.

Blackpool, which attracts more visitors per year than any other UK coastal town, had the highest level of deprivation among the larger English seaside destinations in 2010, the ONS figures suggested.

Health and disability were the biggest areas of deprivation in the seaside towns.

Among the six towns which bucked the trend were Poole and Christchurch in Dorset and Bognor Regis in West Sussex.

The Coastal Communities Fund was set up in 2012 to try to boost deprived seaside towns and villages and will now be extended by a year. The government says the idea is to help coastal towns to create new business opportunities, jobs and skills that will benefit the area.

The money behind it comes from the Crown Estates, which own the rights to fish-farms, wind farms, ports and marinas. Successful bidders are given money equivalent to 50% of revenues generated from things like offshore wind and tidal power and ship moorings in the area.

 

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  • rate this
    +1

    Comment number 22.

    Good news for Hastings & seaside resorts generally.

  • rate this
    +1

    Comment number 21.

    Coastal towns will always suffer economically due to their geography - they've half the catchment of a town in the midlands - simple fact.

  • rate this
    +3

    Comment number 20.

    Places like Blackpool etc are cultural deserts..I wouldnt ever wanna go there xx

  • rate this
    +1

    Comment number 19.

    Don't worry most people will have to holiday in this country soon due to the dangers of foreign travel and lack of money, And it'll be just like the fifties again with everybody mucking in together and helping each other out.

  • rate this
    +13

    Comment number 18.

    The people who like a tatty holiday can go to Benidorm and have one in the sun. It's time British resorts went a bit more upmarket.

  • rate this
    +2

    Comment number 17.

    @Randonperson85

    I feel your comment betrays your ignorance on the topic.

    Sea side towns have suffered heavily from a decline in tourism, coupled with a decline in industry. People within these areas struggle with the same issues faced by the poorest within our cities. As such, they should be afforded the same opportunities for development.

  • rate this
    -1

    Comment number 16.

    This country must get used to it we are no different to most places in Africa or India just a bit better than America.

  • rate this
    +1

    Comment number 15.

    I understand the UKs 'most deprived' ward is in Hastings. Coastal towns have been forgotten for too long and too often end up as dumping grounds for the vulnerable (particularly drug users). This is great news in principlal however what will the money be spent on? I doubt re-paving the promenards / pedestrianising town centres will solve all the probems in these towns.

  • rate this
    -11

    Comment number 14.

    11. FreeSpeech - 'Please please do not restore any more piers. They've had their day. Time to breath something new into seaside towns'

    I agree. Now its the age of the 'pleasure turbine'!

  • rate this
    +4

    Comment number 13.

    When you live on benefits you can live where you like. Hence the numbers who move to what were nice seaside areas. If the benefits system didnt pay for your lovely house/flat near the sea, and only near your potential place of work, then things might pick up again without any other interference. Or do Councils want the 'deprived' title - to bring in the money

  • rate this
    -1

    Comment number 12.

    Look at some of these seaside towns with massive social problems etc. Majority of them are Labour controlled and have been for many years. Why didn't Labour do something about them then instead of opening floodgates to make the situation even worse.

  • rate this
    -2

    Comment number 11.

    Please please do not restore any more piers. They've had their day. Time to breath something new into seaside towns.

  • rate this
    0

    Comment number 10.

    29Mil... Is that all Gareth Bale is worth 100Mil!!

  • rate this
    +4

    Comment number 9.

    @7.RandomPerson85

    Why should any inland cities get any of this pot of money, at the end of the day the fund is basically compensation for what industry have destroyed along our coastline.

  • rate this
    +2

    Comment number 8.

    Good idea. Direct action to improve things. People do forget that seaside towns can be a nightmare, particularly in the winter.

  • rate this
    -22

    Comment number 7.

    I'M OUTRAGED.
    Unfortunately, this is a massive waste of money as coastal areas will always be destroyed.

    The government need to get a grip, the people in the cities are starving or jobless and these coastal areas can wait to be rebuilt. Besides, not many tourists visit these places.

    Give the money to the poor, not the sea.

  • rate this
    +3

    Comment number 6.

    A lot of coastal resorts seem to rely on old fashioned methods of tourism. There is a lot of scope for new ideas, residents and businesses need to have a good think.

    The cost of some food and accommodation can be off-putting.

  • rate this
    +6

    Comment number 5.

    Having recently visited Portsmouth I am sure it should qualify for some of the grant. The deprivation is oozing out of the back streets and the people show signs of great depravity.I visited Fratton and the houses are so crammed in I reckon it must be one of the most dense populations in the UK. Everywhere are vacant shops and the high street is full of charities all with 'sales' on! Give it help.

  • rate this
    +16

    Comment number 4.

    A nice coastal path, cafes, gardens would be more welcoming to potential visitors, instead of the traditional cheap tat, amusements arcades & kiss-me-quick hats.

  • rate this
    +2

    Comment number 3.

    If you are leaving prison you might return to your home area or alternatively head to an area where it is easy to find accommodation and no one knows you.That is why towns like Blackpool are full of people who the BBC can describe as socially deprived.Pumping money into seaside towns is not the answer.Reforming the benefit system is the way forward and particularly housing benefit.

 

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