After being officially approved by Lancaster City Council in February 2022, the North West’s very own Eden Project has now been awarded £50 million from the government’s Levelling Up fund for plans to go ahead. The move aims to re-imagine Morecambe “as a seaside resort for the 21st Century” by transforming the derelict site on the seafront into a world class visitor attraction, now known as Eden Project Morecambe.
Just an hour-and-a-half’s drive from Manchester, the brand new resort comes from the same team behind Cornwall’s Eden Project, and aims to bring both indoor and outdoor experiences, “exhibits, performance, learning, play, immersive experiences, world-class horticulture, live music, art, food, beverage and retail spaces” to the beautiful seaside town for the first time ever. The funding from the second of the government’s flagship Levelling Up Fund, which was announced on January 18, will also kick-start regeneration more widely in Morecambe, creating jobs, supporting tourism and encouraging investment in the seaside town.
Set to cost a whopping £125m, the Eden Project North is currently earmarked to open in 2024, bringing with it “a sense of wonder and connection with the natural world” via educational resources and unique immersive experiences that put a focus on the natural environment.
The architectural marvel will see three seafront shell-shaped pavilions built, overlooking the bay and taking inspiration from the environment that surrounds. It’s expected the new project will see millions of visitors every year, helping to reposition Morecambe as one of the UK’s leading seaside towns.
David Harland, CEO of the Eden Project, said: “Beauty surrounds, health abounds. That’s Morecambe’s actual slogan and that came from the 19th and 20th century where actually people came to Morecambe to take the air, to see the Lake District in the background, to witness the marvel that is Morecambe Bay in front of you, and that’s where Eden Project North is going to be based.
“It’s on the seafront. It’s looking out to that wonderful bay and on to the Lake District. Behind you on the site, what you’ve got is a town that has experienced some decline over the late 20th century and into the 21st century. It’s a place actually that feels a little bit like occasionally hope has deserted it, and what Eden Project North is trying to do is bring back that hope.
“It’s trying to give opportunity for people, yes in jobs, yes in the supply chain, but also in experiencing the bay, in looking at the world around us afresh, and in exciting people that the future remains theirs to make. So Eden Project North, coming 2024 to Morecambe – see you there!”