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House of Lords Select Committee praises the work of local councils in Cornwall

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A new report published by the House of Lords Select Committee on regenerating seaside towns and communities has praised the work of local (parish and town) councils in Cornwall.

The Future of Seaside Towns report features local councils in Cornwall including Newquay Town Council (part of the Newquay Safe partnership); St Ives Town Council, (which following a referendum on the neighbourhood plan banned the sale of future new build homes to second homeowners); and Penzance Town Council (whose members sit on the Penzance Regeneration Partnership - the council also provided match funding for the repair and restoration of the Jubilee Pool).

The report also makes a number of recommendations to help improve the fortunes of coastal towns, including the provision of high-quality affordable housing; enhanced transport and digital connectivity; a mixed local economy and financial latitude and freedom to unlock the pioneer spirit that made the seaside attractive to investors. The report also notes that leadership will be fundamental if the change is to be achieved.

Publication of the report follows a call for evidence which NALC responded to, highlighting the limited employment opportunities in coastal towns, the need for more affordable housing and better transport links and calling for more help and support for seaside towns in need of regeneration.

Cllr Sue Baxter, chairman of NALC, said “Many of NALC’s coastal town and parish councils will agree with the conclusions of this report around the need for affordable housing, better connectivity and the need for a mixed local economy in seaside communities. The recognition that local leadership is crucial is also to be welcomed and many NALC councils play a key part in local partnerships as evidenced in the Cornwall case studies quoted. It is disappointing that there is little mention of the impact that second homeowners are having on the viability of some communities, especially on the Norfolk coast, and NALC would like to see a specific share of the council tax collected on these second homes in coastal towns passed to local councils in those areas, to ameliorate this problem.”

Read The Future of Seaside Towns report

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