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".


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

    Comment number 42.

    After just returning from a fortnight in sun soaked Spain I find it hard to comprehend somewhere like Hastings rivalling the Costa in weather, value for money and beauty.
    British seaside resorts have become dumping grounds or highly priced London's-on-Sea, i.e. Brighton.

  • rate this

    Comment number 41.

    Visit many a UK seaside town & they take you back 30/50 years.
    They are nostalgic escapes but most people want modern escapes.
    Much of seafronts are tacky low price low quality goods & food, just slightly better quality is a big leap in price. Theres not a lot to do except to just spend money, a few free attractions would benefit all enormously

    Donkey rides just remind me of Liebour & ConDems

  • rate this

    Comment number 40.

    Why bother?

    There will be hundreds of thousands of Romanian's and Bulgarian's coming to live in them in a few months time anyway.

  • rate this

    Comment number 39.

    Why would u pay £400 notes to stay in the uk when u can go magaloof for the same money

  • rate this

    Comment number 38.

    If they want to regenerate these seaside towns they should install lots of Punch and Judy shows all along the proms.

    That's the way to do it.

  • rate this

    Comment number 37.

    £29m is a drop in the ocean (sorry!). I went to school in Blackpool and it was a dump then and it's even worse now. The odd few quid splashed here and there can't cover up the years of neglect. Blackpool relied on the Pleasure Beach to draw tourists and they did nothing to keep up with the times. The ostrich style of management is clear for all to see. Reap what you sow!

  • rate this

    Comment number 36.

    Tinker around the edges all you like but until the root causes of all these issues is addressed they will remain an issue.

    Everything at the moment revolves around investment in London and the south east, and on the declining standards of living as big multinationals and govts fleece the inhabitants of the UK.

  • rate this

    Comment number 35.

    Ban airplanes, people will flock back and no need for another runway or airport.

  • rate this

    Comment number 34.

    The ridiculous thing here is funfair operators, Hoteliers and amusement aracade owners have done nothing to reinvest the profits they make in the local economy.
    In Swansea, John Bollom is repairing Mumbles Pier. Why? Because it was a condition of planning permission for luxury flats next to his highly profitable Amusement Arcade and Restaurant.
    Taxpayer to the rescue of the private sector- Again!

  • rate this

    Comment number 33.

    Why is it just deprived seaside towns that can bid for this cash?
    Shouldn't all deprived areas be allowed to bid?

  • rate this

    Comment number 32.

    It'd take more than 29 million to remove all the double yellows near the pier at Weston Super Mare. Greedy council trying to rake in parking fees from holidaymakers by removing all available parking near the beach. That's why I don't go there anymore. I pity the impact it'll have on the small businesses in that town.

  • rate this

    Comment number 31.

    We the British public are slightly to blame for the down fall of costal towns as most people go abroad but isn't it understandable these places are tacky grotty dumps if I'm honest. Maybe if they was more investment in them more people Luke go. Sadly it is also down to our unpredictable weather as well. I imagine these places were brilliant 50 years ago but not now.

  • rate this

    Comment number 30.

    The last thing these deprived areas is a boost to attract east europeans into the area.

  • rate this

    Comment number 29.

    Whilst giving these tired old dames a good old clean up and face lift is a good idea what will happen to the so called undesirables these places attract?
    Will they be foistered on to some other town?
    Are our seaside resorts about to be subject to change like our new smartened up inner cities where property values have gone through the roof.

  • rate this

    Comment number 28.


    Where exactly is "Pool" it must be very deprived it doesn't even feature on any maps I have, maybe the locals were too embarrassed and took out an injunction to prevent it appearing on maps.

  • rate this

    Comment number 27.

    What these places need are jobs and a more diverse economy away from saesonal work.

  • rate this

    Comment number 26.

    11. Freespeech: Our pier is just about to be restored after a fire (Hastings) which is excellent news. It is the central feature of the beach and a listed building and deserves to be restored to its former glory after being an eyesore for the past 50 years. Castles, disused viaducts, stately homes etc. have "had their day" but form important landscape features and deserved to be preserved.

  • rate this

    Comment number 25.


    "Why bother? Most UK seaside towns are over crowded, over priced dumps"

    Try a day in London instead

  • rate this

    Comment number 24.

    Why bother? Most UK seaside towns are over crowded, over priced dumps i.e. Blackpool, Weston-Super- Mare (Weston-on the- Mud), Pool, Brighton etc. etc. etc.; And the roads are leading to these places are completely clogged! WHY BOTHER. Spend it on feeding the UK needy!

  • rate this

    Comment number 23.

    I remember spending many happy summers as a kid at Chapel St. Leonards, Skeggy and Bridlington. These places used to be thriving, but a visit now and it's clear how they have suffered in recent years.

    Unfortunately, holidaying in England to places like these is not what it was.


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