Area fails to win headquarters bid

Great Yarmouth has lost out to a northern rival over a battle to become the home of a new body to regulate and manage the seas around England.The borough was given the thumbs down over Tyneside, whose selection as the headquarters for the groundbreaking new Marine Management Organisation will bring jobs and regeneration benefits - but leaves Yarmouth with its head in its hands.

Great Yarmouth has lost out to a northern rival over a battle to become the home of a new body to regulate and manage the seas around England.

The borough was given the thumbs down over Tyneside, whose selection as the headquarters for the groundbreaking new Marine Management Organisation will bring jobs and regeneration benefits - but leaves Yarmouth with its head in its hands.

A spokesman for Ist East, which threw itself wholeheartedly behind the bid, said both Yarmouth and Lowestoft had vied for the role which would have created at least 40 new jobs and attracted consultancy firms to areas like Beacon Park.

Philip Watkins, 1st East chief executive said: “Naturally we are very disappointed that the Marine Management Organisation will not be coming to Great Yarmouth or Lowestoft.


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“Whilst of course we would have been delighted for the MMO to have come to the priority regeneration area in the East of England, we knew the odds favoured the areas identified in the Government's relocation strategy (The Lyons Report) which does not include East Anglia. Lowestoft and Great Yarmouth combined to put together a strong case involving a wide range of partners. Unfortunately we have not been successful on this occasion, but we wish the MMO well in its new location on Tyneside.

“Meanwhile, the regeneration plans for both towns are still on track and we will continue to work collaboratively with our partners to attract public and private sector investment to the two towns."

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In a letter confirming the decision, the Minister, Hugh Irranca-Davies said “As you know KPMG and my officials visited all the short listed locations to gather further information to help inform my decision. They found the visit to Great Yarmouth and Lowestoft well organised and the presentations were well received...Lowestoft and Great Yarmouth presented a strong bid not least in terms of stakeholder clusters and availability of skilled labour…Once again, thank you for your interest: and for the excellent work you and your team contributed to this process.”

A statement issued by the marine and fisheries industry said: “Tyneside was chosen for several different reasons, not least because of its broad range and good balance of marine interests. It has a working port, a busy local fishing industry and businesses including offshore renewable energy development, all of which fit well with the MMO's role.”

As well as the 40 new posts created by the new HQ up to 200 staff could choose to relocate to it.

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