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Radical regeneration for seafront is outlined by world famous designer

PUBLISHED: 06:30 18 May 2018 | UPDATED: 13:34 18 May 2018

Jayne Knight, arts & development manager at Suffolk County Council, Genevieve Christie of Flipside Festival, Wayne Hemingway, and Kerry Blair head of operations & facilities at Waveney District Council Picture: Conor Matchett

Jayne Knight, arts & development manager at Suffolk County Council, Genevieve Christie of Flipside Festival, Wayne Hemingway, and Kerry Blair head of operations & facilities at Waveney District Council Picture: Conor Matchett

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Plans to regenerate the south beach area of Lowestoft have been outlined by its internationally renowned lead designer.

Artist's impression of the overnight beach huts which are to be built along the seafront. Picture: Courtesy of Waveney District CouncilArtist's impression of the overnight beach huts which are to be built along the seafront. Picture: Courtesy of Waveney District Council

Wayne Hemingway, who has helped with regeneration projects across the UK, said the vision he has helped lay out is a “no brainer” for the town.

The Lowestoft South Beach plans include a renovation of the East Point Pavilion, a brand new pagoda to become a restaurant or café, and seafront beach huts big enough for people to stay in overnight.

Mr Hemingway, with his company HemingwayDesign, has previously worked on regeneration projects in Margate, Morecambe, and Gateshead before becoming involved with Lowestoft.

He said: “The pagoda and the renovation to the East Point Pavilion is all about attracting that younger generation who are rediscovering the parts of the country that the older generation forgot about.

East Point Pavilion. Picture: Courtesy of Waveney District CouncilEast Point Pavilion. Picture: Courtesy of Waveney District Council

“If the pagoda just became an average café then it is wasted, it has got to look amazing and if it does it is more likely the content will also be amazing.

“Everything you do should be touched by the hand of an artist or a designer, if you do that, regeneration will come.”

He added: “The overnight beach huts have just got to happen. That was a pragmatic thing. Where the slippage of the cliff is happening, rather than it just being lost, and because there have been beach huts there before it was about thinking ‘what can we do that is the future’ and take it on.”

“It would be great if the council don’t have to sell them and they stay as an asset that they can make money out from.

A pagoda on the promenade in Littlehampton, on which the Lowestoft design will be based. Picture: Courtesy of Waveney District CouncilA pagoda on the promenade in Littlehampton, on which the Lowestoft design will be based. Picture: Courtesy of Waveney District Council

“If nothing happened for five years it might be old hat because I think this is something that will sweep around the whole country. It is a no brainer really.”

He is working alongside Waveney District Council on the project, with new wayfinding signs already installed as part of the vision.

Kerry Blair, head of operations and facilities at the council, said: “We think there is so much potential here that we could widen the audience to slightly further afield and start to attract a younger group as well as the people who already come here.

“We look at what is happening in Lowestoft and there is some extremely exciting stuff happening here like the offshore wind centre.

“This is going to be a vibrant economy again.”

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