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Summary

• The think-tank Centre for Social Justice published a report called Turning the Tide on 5th August 2013. The report is a short study of five seaside towns – Rhyl, Margate, Clacton-on-Sea, Blackpool, Great Yarmouth – looking at how social breakdown has affected some smaller communities, asking what factors continue to hold them back, and considering what more can be done to help them move on.

• The report argues that there is a clear case for additional transport infrastructure, increased localism and renewed investment in struggling seaside towns – but that the towns will not prosper unless people are given aspiration, education and skills, as well as a welfare system that supports more people back into work. The report recommends that public policy must do what it can to nurture strong families.

• The report further argues that there is a case for devolving greater powers to district level so that they can invest in more proactive services. The authors suggest that allowing local areas to step up and take power and responsibility for local regeneration could create opportunities for action based around the particular needs of the locality.

• This briefing would be most relevant to all tiers of councils, to officers and members working in tourism, economic development, welfare reform and housing.

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