Better Connected

Closed 20 Jul 2020

Opened 29 Jun 2020

Feedback updated 13 Nov 2020

We asked

Southport has the opportunity to bid for up to £50m of central Government funding as part of the Town Deal Fund, to boost economic growth and town wide regeneration.  As part of the stakeholder engagement for the submission, a  consultation exercise was undertaken to gather feedback on a number of Big Ideas that would inform a wider Vision for Southport.

Each of these Big Ideas included  a number of project ideas that we thought had  the potential to attract wider investment both from the Government and from the private sector. We asked what you thought of these Big Ideas and what you think we might have missed.

You said

The Town Deal Board received over 2,033 completed questionnaires, with 826 detailed comments from the questionnaires. In addition to this, we received 40 emails, 5 phone calls and 4 letters.

Following the online consultation, the Town Deal Board also engaged with a number of other stakeholder groups including university students, college students school children, visitors and local business owners.

A summary of all the responses received can be found in this report.Southport Town Investment Plan Consultation Report

We did

This engagement has informed the Town Investment Plan (TIP) which was submitted to government at the end of October 2020. Key points of influence from engagement include: 

  • The importance of the TIP including projects which enhance the appeal of visitor attractions including Pleasureland and the Southport Theatre and Convention Centre
  • The importance of developing a new attraction in the Marine Lake which will attract more visitors to the town
  • The importance of connecting the town centre and Waterfront
  • Necessity of finding new uses and attractions for vacant shops in the town centre. The importance that different areas and attractions are well connected via the public realm, pedestrian and cycling facilities
  • The need for the TIP to address seasonality in the economy. The TIP should also facilitate the attraction and growth of different industries to the town centre with stakeholders highlighting gaps in the business accommodation offer for co-working space and digital and creative industries
  • The majority of the priorities identified by stakeholders under the Green and Clean theme have non-Towns Fund delivery or funding routes. The consultation does highlight an important role that the Towns Fund can play in ensuring that major regeneration developments in the town centre and waterfront can be reached on foot and by cycling, thereby minimising the need for short vehicular journeys in the town

The priorities expressed by consultees that have not been included in the TIP  will be addressed using funding and delivery routes other than Towns Fund.


The Town Deal Board will continue the conversation with residents, visitors and businesses as the Town Investment Plan progresses.





Southport is close to the major cities of the North west, its mainline railway stations and international airports. The quality of its transport connections to the wider region and beyond are critical to ensuring access to business, visitor and job markets.

Within the town it is important that transport infrastructure (such as roads, rail, interchange facilities, cycle and pedestrian routes) support residents, businesses and visitors in safely and conveniently accessing all of the town’s attractions and facilities.

What you’ve already told us…

  • The town lacks an interchange
  • Rail services to Manchester are poor and discourage use of public transport
  • There are no direct rail services to Preston and Central Lancashire
  • Lord Street is the main A Road through the town, making it a busy and congested 
  • There are issues of congestion in the Kew area (for example along  Meols Cop Road)
  • The town centre lacks a modern multi storey car park and convenient parking for long stay
  • Retaining on street parking on Lord Street is important to support businesses
  • Parking charges are perceived to be relatively high within the town centre for residents
  • Pedestrian and cycle links from the town centre to the beach could be improved
  • The town lacks publicly accessible charging points for electric vehicles

Big Ideas for Change

Our strategy for the town centre is shown on the plan and our Big Ideas are described below:

1. Development of modern interchange facilities that encourage greater use of sustainable forms of transport

2. Lobby for better rail services between Southport, Manchester and Preston as part of the Northern Hub rail project

3. Provision of an electric shuttle bus (e-shuttle) linking the new interchange with the Waterfront attractions and Lord Street

4. Investment in electric vehicle charging infrastructure in the town centre, and as a feature of new car parking facilities and major developments

5. Development of a new multi storey car park

6. Re-route through traffic away from Lord Street to make this a more pedestrian and cycle friendly route

7. Redesign the roadspace along Lord Street to incorporate dedicated cycle lanes in both directions and to make the pavement wider in places to assist in safe and comfortable crossing. On street parking provision for bikes as well as short stay parking to be integrated in to the design

8. Upgrade Coastal Road to an A Road to accommodate through traffic

9. Redesign Nevill Street and the junction of Nevill Street and the Promenade to give more space to pedestrians

10. Improve the quality of Scarisbrick Avenue as a key pedestrian route to the waterfront

11. Redesign the Promenade to make this a pedestrian and cycle friendly route and to strengthen connections between the town centre and the waterfront

12. Create a series of “destination streets”, including the central section of Lord Street, Chapel Street, Eastbank Street and King Street where the public realm is enhanced and the pedestrian is given priority

13. Create new “park and change” facilities at the former Kew Park and Ride site, Southport Business Park and Ainsdale-on-Sea to enable interchange between cars and bikes

14. Make improvements to Meols Cop Road to reduce congestion and queuing

What happens next

What happens next?

We will review all feedback received and use this to inform our bid for £25 million from the Towns Fund, which will be submitted to the Government later this year. This will be an ongoing conversation between residents, businesses, the Town Deal Board, Sefton Council and Government and there will be more opportunities to get involved. 


  • All Areas


  • Stakeholders
  • Local businesses
  • Local residents
  • Children and Young people
  • Councillors/MP's
  • Visitors/Tourists/Non-residents


  • Public Transport
  • Regeneration
  • The environment
  • Leisure
  • Planning
  • Tourism
  • Economic development