Seaside towns must be inspired to reinvent themselves, says Lords report
03 May 2019
The problems facing seaside towns stem from a combination of geography and wider industrial decline. Cut off from much of the country, they are often over dependent on tourism and sea-based industries such as fishing and shipbuilding.
According to a House of Lords committee, they must reinvent themselves by making more effective use of their assets with more government investment providing better transport, housing and digital infrastructure. A pioneering spirit and strong civic leadership are also vital to any revival, says a report by the Lords’ select committee on regenerating seaside towns and communities in England.
The committee heard from a range of witnesses, including Jake Berry, the minister responsible for the Northern Powerhouse in the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government.
Published on April 4, the report flags up initiatives taken to attract more visitors and diversify employment. This briefing will be of interest throughout local government, particularly for members and council officers in seaside communities.
Among the committee’s recommendations are:
- More investment in digital connectivity, including faster broadband
- Improved housing, including control over houses of multiple occupation let by private landlords
- Housing action zones to support regeneration
- Partnerships between education providers and business to improve training opportunities and skills
- Better coastal transport networks
- New types of enterprise zones tailored to the needs of seaside towns
- A review of the Coastal Communities Fund