Seaham history app with walking trails set to launch as businesses win revamp funding

Tales of Seaham’s rich history will told through an app in a showcase of the town through a £1.6 million regeneration project.

Thursday, 18th March 2021, 4:10 pm

Durham County Council launched the Seaham Townscape Heritage Project in 2019 with cash from the National Lottery Heritage Fund.

The three-year scheme aims to breathe fresh life into the town centre and regenerate buildings in the Church Street area, creating a more attractive and interesting places to live, work and visit.

As part of the efforts, an app championing the town’s features has been developed, offering walking trails telling the story of its buildings, sites of interest and their part in its past.

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Councillor Kevin Shaw showcasing the Discover Seaham app.

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Discover Seaham, created by heritage app specialists At Creative, will also offer information about activities and events taking place in the area, with residents and historians helping to put together the content.

Meanwhile, the first two successful applicants to benefit from the revamp scheme are Paul and Alison Chapplow, the owners of Seaham Pet and Reptile, and Andrew Smith and Mark Milroy, owners of The Coal Face bar – with more being encouraged to apply.

The work will be in keeping with the character and integrity of the Seaham Conservation Area and the council’s Town and Villages regeneration programme, and will feature chimney and roof repairs, new windows, traditional-style shop fronts and internal security shutters.

Councillor Kevin Shaw and Alison Chaplow, outside of Seaham Pet and Reptile, which is one of two business to win grant backing for building improvements.

Councillor Kevin Shaw, the council’s cabinet member for strategic housing and assets and a Dawdon ward member, said: “Retailers trading in Church Street have asked for a long time about how we can help to stop and reverse the decline of Church Street and help them to create an attractive and vibrant town centre.

"We are therefore delighted to award our first two grants for this scheme and look forward to working with the owners on these projects to help transform the high street.

“Alongside this regeneration work, the Discover Seaham app will further help to put Seaham on the map as it helps to bring the town’s history to life.

Businesses have 18 more months to apply for grant help through the scheme.

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