The Watchet Coastal Communities Team has set out radical plans for driving growth, jobs and prosperity in the town.
The Coastal Communities Team in Watchet is made up of key stakeholders and interest groups in the town including: Onion Collective CIC, West Somerset District Council, Town Council, WS Railway, the Conservation Society, Watchet Chamber of Trade, Market House Museum, Boat Owners Association, Theatre Melange and many others. The team is part of over 100 coastal communities across the country taking control of our futures.
The new Economic Plan lays out practical steps including short term “quick wins”, medium term proposals and more ambitious long term measures, which will help make the town a destination to live and work in for years to come.
The Coastal Community Team has pledged to work collaboratively to:
Build a strong tourism economy with infrastructure support
Develop a vibrant and compelling brand
Create jobs and enterprise
Support retail development
Enhance cultural opportunities
Short term plans have already started and include the launch of new street fairs taking place on the first Sunday of every month from 1 May, a new vibrant brand for Watchet and a programme of signage for directing visitors to tourist attractions in the town are all already in development.
Longer term plans include the improvement of tourism provision from the new Visitor Centre due to open this summer, free WIFI for the town, new coastal walkways, sculpture trails and the East Quay Development.
Chair of the Watchet Coastal Communities Team and Mayor of Watchet Cllr Peter Murphy said: “The Watchet Coastal Communities Team is a dynamic group of committed local people who are actively working hard to see positive change in Watchet. Already many projects have started and it is exciting to see progress happen so quickly.
“Watchet is a wonderful town, rich in potential and our new Economic Plan clearly and comprehensively lays out how we drive forward growth, jobs and prosperity. I am proud to be a part of it. “
Minehead is also a Coastal Community town and has produced its Economic Plan. Their short term proposals include the launch of Minehead Job Hub last month, the restoration of the popular zig-zag path and business plans for a community swimming pool and the Old Minehead Hospital.Longer term plans include establishing a community radio station in Minehead, and setting up a tourism training academy locally.
Communities Secretary Greg Clark said that work in Minehead and Watchet is “proof coastal communities are ready for economic lift off”.
He added: “Our Great British Coast has enormous economic potential and we are determined to see it thrive all year round – not just in the summer months.
“The huge number of plans submitted, demonstrate the wave of optimism, and wealth of creative and practical ideas to boost economic lift-off. I now want to see their hard work and enthusiasm come to fruition by helping to deliver their ideas through the Coastal Community teams.”
To download the Watchet Coastal Communities Team Economic Plan click here