Hot off the press from Laura Sandys:
"In Parliament, Laura Sandys MP received a commitment from the Minister for Arts and Culture, Ed Vaizey MP, that he would support her campaign for seaside towns to be marketed as all year round destinations.
The Minister explained that “culture makes a fantastic contribution to regeneration throughout the country.” Earlier in the week, the Minister had attended the parliamentary reception in the House for the launch of the Turner Contemporary Gallery. In Parliament, Laura joked that fellow guest and Margate artist - Tracey Emin - “was most taken by the Minister”. After many laughs, the Minister blushed and thanked Laura for ensuring that he would now appear in the parliamentary sketch.
Following the question, Laura said: “With the forthcoming April opening of Turner Contemporary and the array of cultural and heritage attractions across Thanet, Sandwich and the Stour Villages now more than ever we have a chance to market the area as an all year, all weather tourism destination.”
[Ed.: Those working in quality independent businesses here in Margate, know that we already have a growing all year round offering. What is needed is recognition and support of this in terms of strategic marketing.]
“Tourism already contributes a huge amount to our local economy. If we effectively market the area to attract visitors throughout the year and not just in the summer months, we could create more jobs and boost the amount of money spent on our local high streets. My campaign – Destination History – aims to do just this and over the coming months I will be working closely with our local attractions to help maximise the number of tourists to Thanet and Sandwich.”
Watch Laura at 31.25 in: http://www.parliamentlive.tv/Main/Player.aspx?meetingId=7733
For further information please contact Laura Sandys MP on 07980 595861
Regeneration (Seaside Towns)
17. Laura Sandys (South Thanet) (Con): What assessment he has made of the contribution of arts and culture to the regeneration of deprived seaside towns. 
The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Culture, Olympics, Media and Sport (Mr Edward Vaizey):
Culture makes a fantastic contribution to regeneration throughout the country. Earlier this week, I was privileged to attend a reception in the House for the launch of the Turner Contemporary gallery, and I am sure that my hon. Friend will join me in praising Roger de Haan's work in revitalising Folkestone, even though it is not in her constituency.
Laura Sandys: I most certainly will, and I know that Tracey Emin was most taken by the Minister on Monday evening. Seaside towns have always been marketed as summer locations. Now we have that internationally renowned gallery in Margate, I hope that he might make representations to the tourism Minister to ensure that seaside towns are marketed all year round. That is how we will secure the most effective regeneration for places such as Margate, Ramsgate, Hastings and, yes, Folkestone as well.
Mr Vaizey: I am grateful to my hon. Friend for ensuring that I appear in tomorrow's parliamentary sketch, and the minute I sit down, I will turn to my right and lobby the tourism Minister.
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