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Priority Projects

Research, consultation and analysis identified some clear priorities - additional areas of activity to complement and boost what Thanet is already doing to develop and promote tourism.

These priority projects are about

  • Beach Management & Development
  • Coastal Regeneration
  • Telling Our Stories (how the destination and its businesses can use the Shared Story to develop their offer and communicate and market it).

These projects create the focus for the DMP, selected because they have the ability to make a difference, forge partnerships and strengthen the visitor economy. They need intervention to make them happen.

Actions focus on investing in Thanet’s natural and built assets and on business growth, underpinned by skills support for tourism and cultural SMEs. The DMP aims to create more things to see and do, which helps position Thanet as a short break destination. To achieve that positioning, it is critical to attract inward investment in places to stay. Hotel companies will invest in those destinations where they have identified untapped demand.

The DMP is also about supporting and enabling a new way of partnership working and decision making between the Council and the industry and less about prescriptive actions. Setting up new groups and capacity building are essential to deliver this and central to the early actions of the DMP. These groups will develop and evolve their tasks and roles overtime.

There are funding opportunities available now for innovative pilots through EU Programmes and for soft loan schemes to encourage private sector investment through Expansion East Kent (Regional Growth Fund). The DMP is designed to take advantage of these opportunities and to ensure businesses understand how to access them.

In the following three sections, the plan sets out more detail on each priority project and early tasks phased over the 5-year life of the DMP. Aspects of Beach Management & Development and Coastal Regeneration will take longer to deliver because of the nature and scale of change they aspire to achieve. In the early years the focus is on foundation tasks that create a strong base on which to build.