Leaders from across the region have signed a letter urging Chancellor Rishi Sunak to allocate a significant chunk of the £125m required to build the Morecambe attraction.
Eden Project International, the company developing Eden Project North, lodged a 140-page business case to the Government in November, asking for £70m to get the scheme off the ground. The request has been backed by leaders from across a variety of sectors, including health, education and business, ahead of Wednesday’s budget.
The letter to the Government describes Eden Project North as “a once in a generation opportunity…that dramatically delivers on the Government’s levelling up policy agenda, and the trust and faith that the people of the North of England have placed in change.”
Co-signatories of the letter include:
- Dr Sakthi Karunanithi, director of public health for Lancashire County Council
- John Roberts, founder and chief executive of Bolton-based appliances retailer AO
- Morecambe-born designer Wayne Hemmingway
- Alan Milburn, former Secretary of State for Health and current chancellor of Lancaster University
Scroll down for a selected list of co-signatories
David Harland, chief executive of Eden Project International, said: “We’re heartened to have received such passionate support from such a wide variety of Northern leaders and hope that the Government can see that Eden Project North will be enormously beneficial for the region.
“It is clear to everyone involved in this project that the community is completely behind Eden Project North and we know that they are as determined as us to make a success of this vision. We urge the Prime Minister and Chancellor to support Eden Project North in the Budget next week.”
Eden is seeking a mixture of private and public funds to make up the difference beyond any central Government funding tat may be allocated on Wednesday.
The developer unveiled its proposals for the project, to be built on a waterfront site at Morecambe Bay in Lancashire, in 2018. Eden Project North, designed by Grimshaw Architects, is to be an immersive visitor experience housed across a series of mussel shell-shaped domes.
The development intends to focus on educating visitors on the marine habitat and ecology of the adjoining Morecambe Bay, among other aims.
There would be two main biomes: Above the Bay would be filled with plants and art installations, while Below the Bay would contain a series of immersive and dramatic theatrical experiences, according to Eden Project International.
The scheme would also include an outdoor arena for live music and performances
Eden Project North is projected to attract around one million visitors a year and directly employ more than 400 people, according to a 140-page business case submitted to the Government in November.
Eden’s partners in the Morecambe project are Lancashire County Council, Lancaster City Council, Lancaster University and the Lancashire Enterprise Partnership.
Subject to funding and planning approval, the project could complete by 2023.
Selected list of co-signatories
Rt. Hon. Alan Milburn, Chancellor, Lancaster University
Rt. Hon. The Lord Shuttleworth, Lord Lieutenant of Lancashire
Rt. Hon. The Lord Cavendish of Furness
Rt. Hon. The Lord Inglewood
Rt. Hon. The Baroness Valentine
Rt. Hon. The Lord Judd
Rt. Hon. The Baroness Ruth Henig
Rt. Hon. The Lord Liddle
Tim Farron MP
Wayne Hemingway MBE
Professor Andy Schofield, vice chancellor, Lancaster University
Professor Steve Bradley, deputy vice chancellor, Lancaster University
Professor Dame Sue Black, pro-vice chancellor, Lancaster University
Mr Oliver Robinson, president, Lancaster University Student Union
Dr John Cater, vice chancellor, Edgehill University
Mr Wes Johnson, principal, Lancaster & Morecambe College
Mr Andrew Wren, principal, Furness College
Mr Fazal Dad, principal, Blackburn College
Professor Graham Baldwin, vice chancellor, University of Central Lancashire
Professor Vanessa Toulmin, chair of Morecambe Winter Gardens Preservation Trust
Local Authority & LEP
Cllr Geoff Driver, leader, Lancashire County Council
Angie Ridgwell, chief executive, Lancashire County Council
Cllr Dr Erica Lewis, leader, Lancaster City Council
Kieran Keane, chief executive, Lancaster City Council
Sam Plum, chief executive, Barrow Council
Cllr Giles Archibald, leader, South Lakeland Council
Lawrence Conway, chief executive, South Lakeland Council
David Taylor CBE, DL, interim chair. Lancashire Enterprise Partnership
Sarah Kemp, chief executive, Lancashire Enterprise Partnership
Cllr Malcolm Thomas, Mayor of Lancaster
Catherine Penny DL, high sheriff of Lancashire
Pam Barker, Constable of Lancaster Castle
Yak Patel, chief executive, Lancaster District Community and Voluntary Solutions
Sue McGraw, chief executive, St. John’s Hospice
John Roberts, Founder and chief executive, AO
Annette Bramley, director, N8 Research Partnership
Sarah Longlands, director, IPPR North
Mal Garnett, president, Lancaster District Chamber of Commerce
Nick Wilkinson, chair of Lancaster Business Improvement District
Tony Johnson, manager, Lancaster Business Improvement District
John O’Neill, manager, Morecambe Business Improvement District
Jenny Natusch, founder, Escape2Make
Jolyon Brewis, partner, Grimshaw Architects
Paul May, executive director, Tivandi Ltd
David Dawson, trustee and secretary, Save the Grange Lido
Phil Bradby, Chair, Save the Grange Lido
Dr Sakthi Karunanithi, director of public health, Lancashire County Council
Dr Amanda Doyle OBE, chief officer ICS, Lancashire and South Cumbria
Dr Andy Knox, director of population health for Morecambe