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Sefton W.A.T.E.R. Project
Flagship proposal for Crosby Marine ParkArticle by Neil Ash, Planning & Economic Regeneration, Sefton Council
Work has just started to test the feasibility of a major water-sports centre at the lake in Crosby Marine Park. Called the Sefton WATER Centre (Waterfront Access to Training, Employment and Recreation), funding has been obtained through the Mersey Waterfront Park for consultants to work up ideas in consultation with the local community and stakeholders.
The basic idea is to develop a recreation facility specially designed to be accessible for all including those people with a disability. By capturing the full potential of the site, a flagship project with both regional and national impact could be developed.
Locum Destination Consulting (the consultants) will be looking at how recreation can be combined with other services such as training, links to the local community, environmental education etc. to build up something with much broader relevance than a standard sports centre. They will also see how the project could fit in to the local landscape, testing out initial design options.
The main point of the project is to find the most appropriate mix of facilities for long term sustainability. There is a long way to go yet before anything concrete emerges. However initial reaction to the ideas from the broad-based steering group working with the consultants has been positive.
From the coastal point of view, the centre could be a major facility for visitors to the coast, and would be a significant start point for the Sefton Coast Path. If successful it could also lead to significant upgrading of the whole of Crosby Marine Park.
The consultants must finalise their study by April 2004. The Council would then have to decide whether to take it further. Availability of funding, and the views of local communities would be major considerations. We hope to be able to report on the findings of the study in the next edition of Coastlines
(For further information contact Neil on firstname.lastname@example.org)