Government to boost staycations with £700,000 seaside fund

Coastal locations around the UK could see a boost in domestic tourists after the government announced a £700,000 fund to restore local landmarks.

Some 15 projects in locations including Durham, Dorset, Cumbria and Devon have been awarded up to £50,000 to restore local landmarks and boost tourism to the seaside

The government hopes the work will encourage a “wave of enthusiasm” for trips to seaside locations, and help boost the £4bn that tourism generates for coastal communities each year.

Coastal Communities Minister Mark Francois said: “Across our Great British Coast we’ve got heritage hooks to be proud of, but some of these places need some tender, loving, care.

“That’s why over the past year we’ve invested £3.7m to get them back into ship-shape and now 15 more brilliant British attractions will be buoyed up by work to restore them to their former glory.

“This country has sightseeing gems that are a match for anywhere in the world and I’d urge people to take a trip down to the seaside to discover them.”

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Projects so far receiving funding include:

  • The Churches Conservation Trust in Kent to provide access to the tower of St Peter’s Church Sandwich offering a birds-eye view over one of the most complete medieval townscapes in England.
  • Illfracombe Museum in Devon to protect and preserve its unique collection of Victorian curiosities right on the seafront.
  • Maryport Coastal Community Team in Cumbria to brighten up the local lighthouse, getting it back into working order and putting the spotlight on Maryport as a tourist destination.
  • Ryde town council on the Isle of Wight to revitalise the western gardens, creating an arts and performance area, around Ryde pier.
  • South Shields council to develop options to help link tourist trails on the South Shields peninsula from historic sites like the Arbeia Roman Fort to the forthcoming North East Centre for the Written Word – The Word.
  • Lancaster city council to give a new lease of life to a disused lido in Morecambe and turn into a welcome venue for festivals, arts and leisure.


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