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Funding boost for coastal towns

A sunset across The Wash at Hunstanton  Picture: Chris Bishop

A sunset across The Wash at Hunstanton Picture: Chris Bishop

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Coastal regeneration schemes in Norfolk and Suffolk have netted more than £800,000 in government funding.

Waders swirling over The Wash at Snettisham. Tourism officials believe its unque sights can attract more sailors Picture: Steve RowlandsWaders swirling over The Wash at Snettisham. Tourism officials believe its unque sights can attract more sailors Picture: Steve Rowlands

The lion’s share goes to a campaign to attract more leisure sailors to The Wash, which has been awarded £679,000 from the Coastal Communities Fund.

West Norfolk council launched Sail The Wash five years ago, after new mooring pontoons were created on the Ouse in King’s Lynn.

It hoped to promote the town as a destination for water borne tourism, along with the nearby ports of Sutton Bridge and Wisbech.

Now it plans to improve the moorings and employ a dedicated marketing and promotions specialist to develop a Sail The Wash brand and market this among the boating fraternity. This will attract additional tourism to the area which will boost the local economy.

The Venetian Waterways in Great Yarmouth is set to open for the first time in nine months as it hosts the Rotary Club's Duck Race. Picture: Neil DidsburyThe Venetian Waterways in Great Yarmouth is set to open for the first time in nine months as it hosts the Rotary Club's Duck Race. Picture: Neil Didsbury

Chris Bamfield, executive director for leisure at the council, said: “This is excellent news for the area. Growth of this tourism asset is currently limited because the infrastructure does not support sailing in and around The Wash. By working with our partners to create additional moorings both on the Great Ouse at Kings Lynn and River Nene at Sutton Bridge, as well as providing additional stop over points at various other locations for boats sailing in and around The Wash, we can create a destination sailing experience.”

Two further bids have been approved by the Coastal Revival Fund - £48,000 for the Hunstanton Prosperity Coastal Communities team for wayfinding and place-making signage, and £50,000 for the King’s Lynn Renaissance Coastal Communities team for the repair and restoration of the Grade II listed Sommerfield and Thomas Warehouse, on the South Quay at King’s Lynn.

Some £50,000 has been awarded to Great Yarmouth’s Venetian Waterways restoration, along with £35,000 for the restoration of the Sole Bay Arts Centre, in Southwold.

Other winners include £950,000 for Felixstowe’s seafront regeneration and £630,000 to promote the Essex coast path.

Communities secretary James Brokenshire said: “I am determined to support investment and development of our coastal communities across the East of England and create an economy that works for everyone as we prepare for Brexit and beyond.”

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