Signs Express (Lancaster) has joined in with community celebrations after it was announced that the town of Morecambe had been successfully named as one of only 15 towns to be awarded a share of government funding to help rejuvenate the area.
The £100,000 cash windfall is part of the Portas Pilot project, an initiative launched following an independent review of the future of the high street by retail expert Mary Portas. Morecambe was one of over 350 entries of which only 15 locations have been successfully named in the funding.
As a community project, local businesses including Signs Express (Lancaster), community leaders and the general public all came together to back the campaign under the strapline ‘MoreCanBe Done’.
Signs Express (Lancaster) was keen to financially support the campaign and help promote awareness in the area. They provided large format full colour graphics in strategic locations across the town offering a dual purpose – covering unsightly vacant shop windows as well as encouraging community interaction and support for the initiative.
The marketing campaign for ‘MoreCanBe Done’ underpinned the application for the Portas Pilot project, which promoted the towns vision of Morecambe as a destination for socialising, culture, wellbeing, learning as well as shopping. With over 30% of retail space currently unoccupied, the bid was targeted at improving the area close to the Arndale shopping centre.
Signs Express centre owner Thomas Somers said, “After hearing in May that the town team had been initially unsuccessful, the application was reviewed and resubmitted and we are absolutely delighted to hear the news that we are one of only 15 towns to receive the funding award. We are very excited to now be able to put the plans into action and I am sure it will make a great difference to Morecambe and especially put the Arndale onto the map. We will continue to offer our community support along with other businesses in the area and the enthusiasm of the town team who have worked so hard to develop the campaign will be infectious across the community.”
John Watkins, manager of the Arndale Centre, said: “It’s a great day for Morecambe. I’m absolutely delighted, it’s phenomenal news.”
Mr Watkins, local businesses including Signs Express (Lancaster), marketing company SATO and members of Morecambe Town Council, including town clerk David Croxall and deputy leader Darren Clifford, were behind the ‘MoreCanBedone’ bid for the regeneration pot.