Skegness is a wonderful place. From its friendly residents to its proud visitor economy, I’m glad to have called it home my whole life. However, the potential that has always been there to be realised needs to be the focus of any major investment in the area.
The Towns Fund, of which we’ve strengthened our chances of making the most of with our Connected Coast formation with Mablethorpe, means that there’s a real opportunity here to make all of our visions a reality.
While Skegness enjoys a fantastic visitor economy and our population swells for a good 10-12 weeks a year, we need to focus on bringing together all the elements that would make the town a year-round attraction. This means thinking big, about road infrastructure, reasons to make the journey, sea defences to ensure a long-term future and education.
Education, of course, plays a vital role, especially when it comes to feeding our existing domestic offer. Hospitality, in particular, is something that we need to put an emphasis on. Those visiting Skegness should expect the very best when it comes to choice, quality and service when it comes to eating and drinking and while we are famous for our ice creams, fish and chips, candy floss and other treats, we need to have an offer that caters to any discerning visitor, with surroundings and an atmosphere that delivers that. If we can work out a way to make Skegness a foodie mecca in at least some respect, we’ll be able to attract even more people to the town.
Businesses have a real hunger for change. The Summer only lasts so long, so making sure that essential tap of visitors, tourists and even local people making the effort to visit is not turned off each year is essential.
To achieve this is to think long-term. We are seeing hope to attain this in the form of ambitious projects like the Foreshore development, the Further Education College and much more besides. I’m confident that with the passion and now the funding potentially available, that we can make our town an even more of a destination.
Sid Dennis, Chair, Skegness PRG