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Seaside towns must 're-invent themselves' - says report

Many seaside towns and coastal communities are in desperate need of improvements to transport, housing and broadband, according to a new report.

A committee in the House of Lords was looking at ways our seaside towns can be regenerated - and found that better access to further and higher education for young people in seaside towns is needed too.

Blackpool Sea Front Credit: pa

The main findings and conclusions from the report include:

  • The Government should promote initiatives to support digital connectivity in coastal communities specifically.
  • Poor-quality housing is a significant problem for many seaside towns. The Committee recommends a package of measures for housing.
  • The Government should prioritise improvements to the coastal transport network when it takes decisions on planning and investment.
  • Some towns have boosted regeneration by cultivating their local creative industries. The Committee wishes to see other towns diversifying their economies and enhancing their local cultural assets.

Chairman of the Committee, Lord Bassam of Brighton, said:

For too long, seaside towns have been neglected. They suffer from issues rooted in the decline of their core industries, most notably domestic tourism, but also in fishing, shipbuilding and port activity, and from their location at the ‘end of the line’. The potential impact of Brexit on these towns, particularly the hospitality sector, also remains an open question."