Report on neglected seaside communities

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A House of Lords report into UK seaside towns and coastal communities concluded that many are in desperate need of better transport, housing and broadband.

Select Committee on Regenerating Seaside Towns chairman 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 also remains an open question.

“What is needed is a package of strategic initiatives and interventions where national and local government work together to address issues such as transport, housing, post-school education and high-speed broadband.”

The economic challenges and opportunities facing the Berwickshire coast are on Scottish Borders Council’s radar and a working group has been set up to focus activity on them. Eyemouth Harbour Trust is working hard to establish the harbour as a service port for the North Sea offshore wind farm sector and Visit Berwickshire Coast is highlighting what the area has to offer tourists.

“Eyemouth Community Council is ahead of the game in relation to this report,” said James Anderson, chairman of Eyemouth Community Council. “We sit on the board of the Eyemouth and East Coast Regeneration Group beside elected councillors. We are also in a new working partnership with SBC neighbourhood services to improve services in our town.

“We are taking a leading role in the regeneration and reinvention of our town, building on the history we have, to make a more prosperous and forward moving community. Coastal towns MUST move forward as a community and not wait for someone else to do it for them. There is no magic wand to make a town a prosperous place to live. A new vision for Eyemouth document is on the way very soon, showing what’s been done, what’s underway and what we look to achieve as a community.”

“Our community is nothing without embracing the diversity within our communities. That is what we feel is the way forward and we will keep pushing for positive change from authorities while actively working hands-on to make things better for everyone.”