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Seafront could be set for £4m facelift

PUBLISHED: 13:36 14 November 2008 | UPDATED: 21:47 05 July 2010

CASH totalling nearly £4m could be used to transform seafront areas of Lowestoft as part of a regeneration project.

Waveney District Council is likely to confirm support for the development of a Lowestoft Coastal Heritage Initiative next week.

CASH totalling nearly £4m could be used to transform seafront areas of Lowestoft as part of a regeneration project.

Waveney District Council is likely to confirm support for the development of a Lowestoft Coastal Heritage Initiative next week.

The proposed initiative would regenerate Kensington Gardens, along the upper and lower Esplanade, at Sparrow's Nest Gardens and on the north Denes.

With the council applying for funding for the three-year plans from the Townscape Heritage Initiatives, Parks for People, and the SeaChange schemes, it could provide approximately £3.2m of external funding over a one to five year period along with additional monies from the council's coffers.

The council's forward-thinking development - which if given the go-ahead is likely to be completed by 2013 - is set to be discussed at a delegated member meeting for regeneration on Wednesday.

Here, as well as giving their backing to the scheme, councillors will be asked to approve spending £10,000 from within existing regeneration budgets for 2009/10 to develop the scheme to stage two funding application level.

A spokesman for Waveney Council said: “The proposed scheme will include several areas of work previously included in the seafront gardens scheme, buildings in the north and south Lowestoft Conservation areas and other areas of north Lowestoft including Sparrow's Nest and Lowestoft Ness.

“The final value of the scheme and council contribution will not be known until stage two of the funding application process is completed.

“Presently the council would (subject to stage two and committee approval) be committing a total of £127,000 towards the present scheme total of £3.86m,” the spokesman added.

In a report to councillors, the proposed scheme would regenerate significant areas of the Esplanade, including several associated buildings of historic value; Kensington Gardens and its associated buildings; repair, and in some cases, bring back into use approximately 30 privately owned properties of historic value near the seafront; repair and enhance heritage related structures around Sparrow's Nest gardens and the existing Heritage Beach Village trail on the north Denes and link it to Lowestoft Ness; and provide signage and heritage-related interpretation panels throughout the seafront area from Kensington Gardens Sparrow's Nest.”

The council's proposed previous scheme to develop the seafront gardens and Esplanade area of Lowestoft didn't progress due to a lack of match funding from Heritage Lottery Funded schemes.

After consultations with the public, private and voluntary sectors, through the council's Waveney Prospectus, the Lowestoft Coastal Heritage Initiative scheme was identified as a key regeneration scheme - and by not developing it, this would lead to “further degeneration of the Lowestoft seafront.”

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