Town lines up celebrity consultant
Discussions to bring internationally-acclaimed designer Wayne Hemingway to Berwick to work on the town's branding and image are at an advanced stage.
The work, confirmed by Berwick Town Council, will be part of the Welcome Visitor Project that officials hope will shape the future of tourism and retail in the town.
Town council officials told the Advertiser that Wayne Hemingway, via his company Hemingway Design, won a recent tender process to carry out the work against stiff competition from local and international bidders.
It is understood that the rigorous bidding process included formal, written bids and a second stage during which the most successful bidders met representatives of the Welcome Visitor steering group.
Town council staff are finalising details of the timing of the work, which will be funded by a recent £304,000 grant from the Coastal Communities fund, administered by the Ministry of Housing Communities and Local Government.
While officially tight-lipped, town council staff are said to be ‘brimming with enthusiasm’ over their success in attracting Hemingway Design to bid to work in Berwick.
Town clerk Gareth Davies said: “This is a chance to set a new standard for Northumberland and the region, with a revitalised image for our town that embraces its history and its future.”
The bid was prepared by Berwick’s Coastal Communities Team, which is working in partnership with the town council and other partners from across the town who took part in the selection process.
Julien Lake, chief executive
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of Berwick Community Trust and chairman of the Welcome Visitor Steering Group, said: “This branding and image work is key to the success of Berwick’s ambition to establish itself as a visitor destination.
“We are delighted to have been able to secure the services of an organisation with the calibre of Hemingway Design. By working with local businesses and the local community the consultants will help to shape the approach to tourism development to ensure Berwick realises the economic benefits of tourism and the visitor economy.”
Berwick MP Anne-Marie Trevelyan added: “I am delighted that the town council has appointed the branding consultant Hemingway Design to help with the ‘Berwick Welcome’ project.
“This is an important step for the town council in getting Berwick recognised in a more focused way and I am pleased that government funding has helped them do this.”
The Berwick Welcome project aims to establish the town as a visitor destination, increase visitor footfall, encourage extended visitor stay and extend the current visitor season.
Over the past two decades, HemingwayDesign have delivered a number of high profile and award-winning affordable new build housing schemes, ‘turned around’ troubled estates, have a string of impactful seaside regeneration projects under their belts and an extensive worldwide knowledge of creative-led regeneration, great urban design and architecture.
Projects in the North East have included the Dunston Staithes housing project, the Festival of Thrift at Redcar and a branding project in Middlesbrough.