Work has started on a multi million project to improve public spaces between Littlehaven and Sandhaven in South Shields
The project, led by South Tyneside Council, aims to improve the area between the north and south promenades with new landscaping and seating.
The council won £1.5m of funding for the scheme from the Coastal Communities Fund earlier this year for the work and this will be matched by £529,000 from the council.
The scheme also includes significant private sector investment. The operators of Ocean Park Amusement Park will carry out improvements to the existing public toilets, provide a new information point /lost children facility and provide new access points to the promenade as an integral element of the overall scheme.
Coun John Anglin, the council's lead member for regeneration and economy, said: “I’m delighted that work has now begun to help create a more vibrant, attractive area to draw visitors onto the foreshore and improve connectivity between the north and south promenades.
“It is a major milestone for our vision for the foreshore. These improvements will benefit businesses and visitors alike for years to come as the scheme builds on the considerable investment that has already gone into regenerating the foreshore to make it a key tourist destination.”
The owners of Ocean Beach Amusement Park are also supporting the improvement works on the foreshore.
One of the owners, Michael Sheeran, said: “We are delighted that Council’s proposed improvements are progressing well with work starting on site. We are fully behind the Council’s project as we feel it will link the two promenades and improve the area’s tourist offer giving us the confidence to invest further in our family entertainment centres and open them up onto the new promenade.”
The work will run until it is completed in Autumn 2016.
Coun Anglin added: “Work on site is a significant step forwards for the project which aims to safeguard and improve South Shield’s tourism by working to create jobs directly on and around the Foreshore by increasing visitor numbers and spend.”