Blackpool and Cleveleys to share £400,000 to boost tourism as lockdown eases
Blackpool and Cleveleys will receive £200,000 each from the Welcome Back Fund, aimed at supporting high streets and seaside towns.
The cash, from a total of new £56m nationally, is designed to help kick start the visitor economy as businesses are able to open up under the Government’s road map out of lockdown.
The funding will allow councils to boost the “look and feel” of local areas and through improved green spaces, more outdoor seating areas as well as markets and pop-up food stalls.
Among a package of measures unveiled by Communities Secretary Robert Jenrick, pubs will also be permitted to erect marquees in gardens for the whole summer.
Caps on private parking fines will also be introduced to clamp down on “cowboy parking firms”, and give drivers confidence when visiting towns.
Part of the funding pot will be specifically allocated for coastal areas, with all English seaside resorts to receive support, under the Government’s plans to help holidaymakers this year.
The funding boost for England’s seaside resorts comes as scientists warned that the prospect of foreign holidays was unlikely this summer due to the risks posed by Covid variants in other countries.
Blackpool North and Cleveleys MP Paul Maynard has welcomed investment to ensure tourism can safely resume.
He said: “It is great to see the Government investing in our communities and that both Blackpool and Cleveleys will benefit.
“The Government wants us to enjoy a great British summer and support like this will be crucial in making that happen.
“Now the challenge is ensuring this funding is put to good use. How it is spent could make an enormous difference. It could potentially be used to support events, help get our hospitality businesses up and running safely, provide more seating or to ensure the safety of tourists and locals alike.”
Mr Maynard is keen to see sectors open up in a safe way.
He said: “I hear from my constituents every day how businesses are ready and eager to get going as soon as the roadmap allows.
“People have made enormous sacrifices and will need support like this.
“I know some will be worried about the return of visitors, but the vaccine rollout is providing the protections we need to get things going again. A cautious and steady approach should ensure we are able to open up again, without putting our progress in the fight against Covid at risk.”
See also: Fylde MP wins assurance that minister is backing tourism.Blackpool Gazette: Thanks for reading. If you value what we do and are able to support us, a digital subscription is just £1 for your first month. Try us today by clicking here