Portas cash for ‘Made in Morecambe’ shop

Victoria Street in Morecambe.
Victoria Street in Morecambe.

A sizeable chunk of our ‘Mary Portas’ money could be spent on a new Morecambe-themed shop in The Visitor building.

Up to £30,000 of the £100,000 grant could go towards a ‘Town Shop’ selling goods made in Morecambe.

The Town Shop would also double as a drop-in centre for business advice, education and information. The Town Team will hold talks with charity Galloway’s Society for the Blind, new owners of The Visitor office, who will move in early next year.

The government grant was awarded to Morecambe last year when we were named as one of the flagship ‘Portas Pilot Towns’ as part of a scheme backed by TV retail guru Mary Portas. The Town Team is the group of independent businesspeople tasked with spending the money to bring more people into Morecambe town centre, specifically on Victoria Street.

Most of the £100,000 grant will be spent as follows:

Town Shop – £20,000 (plus a possible further £10,000)

Marketing campaign to attract more people to the town centre – £15,000

Christmas street market – £10,000

Ice rink – £8,000

Supporting other street festivals/events – £5,000

Town website – £5,000

General expenses including travel costs, room hire etc – £5,000

Morecambe branding campaign – £4,800

Research into Morecambe’s performance and potential - £2,500

Arts projects - £2,000

Thora Hird statue donation – £500

Town Team website – £400

Sponsoring The Visitor Sunshine Awards 2014 – £400

The team has already spent £3,800 on a market on Victoria Street last Easter, £1,515 on new plants on Victoria Street and £150 on expenses.