Published: July 1, 2012
Burnham-On-Sea submits second bid to become Portas Pilot town

Burnham-On-Sea has submitted its second bid to become a Portas Pilot town and win a share of regeneration funding.

Government Minister Grant Shapps - who is the Government’s lead on Mary Portas' plans to revive the country’s high streets - announced in May that Burnham was not among the first 12 towns across the UK to be selected in round one.

Since then, Burnham's Town Team has fine-tuned its application and, after several weeks work, submitted its second bid by Friday's deadline.

Bev Milner Simonds from the Town Team told on Sunday: "The opportunity to be a Portas Pilot is a chance to do something meaningful in Burnham-On-Sea before it is too late."

"We are not interested in racing others to the bottom of 'deprivation indices' – we are proud, we believe in Burnham. We hope that the Department for Communities and Local Government who are judging the bids will recognise this and join with us in making it better, forever."

"We have buckets (and spades) full of ideas and need some assistance in galvanising them into long-term, sustainable changes."

The Town team hope to hear back by the end of July as to whether they have been successful and in the meantime continue to work hard on bringing some elements of the plan to fruition.

Sub groups have been formed to look at subjects ranging from creating new apprenticeships and boosting tourism to introducing 'Sandy Sundays' to encourage more visitors to Burnham. Other proposals include a new 'meet and greet' scheme for visitors, a sea wall and shop shutter art scheme and encouraging the sale of more 'Made in Burnham' products.

The next Town Team meeting is at 6.30pm in The Pizey Room at The Princess Theatre this Thursday, 5th July when all will be welcome.

Pictured: Top, Burnham Town Team's Bev Milner Simonds and Ben Metcalfe in the town centre and, above, shopping guru Mary Portas


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