Call for work on Hartlepool's wartime sites to be part of £5million Seascape bid

Calls have been made to ensure historic former wartime sites in Hartlepool are fittingly cared for as part of a £5million lottery funding bid.

Monday, 20th January 2020, 4:24 pm
Updated Monday, 20th January 2020, 7:23 pm
Tees Road looking over former WW II pillboxes in the direction of The Seal Sands. Hartlepool.

The project, called Seascapes, aims to better protect and celebrate the heritage of the coastline from south of the River Tyne to the River Tees, with several schemes planned for Hartlepool.

It comes after Durham Heritage Coast formed a partnership in 2017 consisting of a group of local, regional and national partners to submit a National Lottery Heritage Fund bid for the plans.

If successful in the final submission process the project would hope to secure £5million to better protect coastlines and deliver over twenty interconnected projects across a four year programme up to 2024.

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Following a report to Hartlepool Borough Council Neighbourhood Services Committee, Coun Marjorie James called for the process to be used to improve war related sites along the stretch to make them fit for tourism use.

She said: “It would be helpful to use this process to actually review the pillboxes and other war-related buildings that are along our coastal stretch.

“Some of them may require some repair and maintenance so that they are available and in a safe way for the public to access to look, to learn, to visit, so we may need to carry out a review.”

She added this would involve an audit of sites and a potential repair list for any works needed.

Council officers said this would be fed back and included into reports around the work.

The project could include numerous projects which would benefit Hartlepool, such as work on the High Light located on the Waterfront and the Beacon Tower on North Pier, improved linkages and signs around the Heugh Battery, and new walkways and cycle routes linking sites.

Tony Hanson, council assistant director for environment and neighbourhood services, said: “The Seascapes Partnership is seeking to secure £5million in funding to enable us to look at the distinctive combination of natural, industrial and cultural heritage to be conserved, enhanced and celebrated.

“It will aim to leave a lasting legacy of restored heritage, improved access and information, improved management of the natural environment, and an enhanced understanding of this heritage-rich seascape.”