Geoffrey attended the official opening of the new Northam Burrows Visitor Centre on Friday, 30 July 2021, near Blue Flag beach at Westward Ho! in Torridge.
To commemorate the occasion, Geoffrey unveiled a plaque by drawing back a discarded fishing net strewn with plastic items that regularly wash up on the beach at Westward Ho! This allowed Geoffrey to touch on the ecological challenges all coastal areas face, which the Centre hopes to highlight through educational programmes for children and installations in the exhibition spaces.
“I am delighted to be here today to open this superb new Visitor Centre and to applaud all the hard work that has gone into its creation. I have special memories of the area in my youth having swum off the beach at Westward Ho! in the 1960s, and these buildings will be a wonderful enhancement of the experience of the Burrows for locals and tourists alike.
“I also hope and believe that the £1.6 million invested from the Government’s regional investment funds could, and should, be the start of something much bigger in Torridge where we see even more investment in our area. I will be doing everything in my power to make sure Torridge has the right support for its future aspirations, such as our Levelling Up Fund bid for Isaac’s Yard in Bideford, and the regeneration of other sites throughout the district.”
The Centre has been funded by £1.2m from the Government’s Coastal Communities Fund and £400K from the Getting Building Fund with Torridge District Council providing the project management element of the build. The bids for funding were facilitated and supported by Heart of the South West Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP) and the Council’s economic partners, North Devon+. Like many local businesses and projects, the work programme had to adapt to the public health restrictions imposed by the pandemic, and shortages of cement and other materials, but has been a great example of collaboration in difficult times between funding bodies, architects, engineers and builders.
You can read more here: Sir Geoffrey Cox QC MP Officially opens the New Northam Burrows Visitor Centre