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Coastal Communities

Volume 616: debated on Monday 24 October 2016

It is a pleasure to see my hon. Friend in his place. We are all proud of our coastal communities. I say that as a Member representing a coastal community myself. We have already invested £125 million in coastal communities across the United Kingdom through the coastal communities fund, £92 million of which was invested in England. We want to go even further, and we have identified at least a further £90 million for local projects. The bidding for those funds has begun, and 40 projects have made it through to the next round. We will be making a decision on them early next year.

I welcome the Minister’s response and his kind words. The Queenborough Harbour Trust in my constituency has been successful in the stage 1 bidding process for obtaining a grant from the coastal communities fund. What advice would he give to the trust members as they enter stage 2 of the process, to ensure they get some success?

I pay tribute to my hon. Friend for his advocacy on behalf of the trust. It should seek guidance and support from its funding officer and its capital adviser who has been assigned to it by the Big Lottery Fund, which administers the coastal communities fund on our behalf. Advice is also available to it on the Big Lottery Fund website.