Plans for a major transformation for Amble have been welcomed by the community at an exhibition.
Residents, visitors and businessmen visited the Fourways 2 building on Friday to see plans for the Harbour Village, which is aiming to establish Amble as the Seafood Town, with most thinking the transformation could only be good for the area.
Comprising a seafood centre and training academy, along with 15 incubator units accommodating small start-up businesses, the Harbour Village scheme has been developed by Northumberland County Council in partnership with Amble Development Trust and in consultation with Warkworth Harbour Commissioners, Amble Boat Company and Coquet Shorebase Trust.
At Friday’s exhibition, the plans for the site were on show and Julia Aston, director of Amble Development Trust, was on hand to talk to those who came in.
She said: “It has been really good. The majority of people have been very, very positive and the remarks we have received from people who haven’t been in have also been really good.
“We have got to create employment from somewhere and we have got to sustain ourselves.
“We have focused particularly on tourism as we have to create something for the tourists to come to.
“We get a lot of tourists anyway but it will give them that something extra and something that is a bit unique.”
Coun Jeff Watson, who represents Amble West with Warkworth, was impressed with the plans.
He said: “This is something that Amble has needed for a long time.
“My favourite part is that there will be a path all the way around the river.
“The whole thing really is going to be an attraction and it is going to bring people to the area.
“It is well thought out and it is a very good plan for the future development of Amble.”
Resident Jean McNicoll, 74, said: “I think it is a great idea. We need improvements.
“I have been here for 70-odd years and I think it will be really good for the town.”
Her sister Joyce Ions, 75, now lives in Adelaide, Australia, but is from Amble originally.
She added: “It’s not bad but I think Amble still needs a big shop.
“But I do think it will be good.
“There is no industry anymore and nothing for the teenagers to go into so I think it will help that.”
Mary Maclean, 70, from Amble said: “I think it is absolutely wonderful.
“It is exactly what Amble needs and it will clean the place up as well.”
Her husband, Ian, 63, added: “It looks as if it is going to be good for the community.
“It is going to bring some employment and I think it is a great idea.
“I am up for anything new for Amble.”
Caroline Fairley, 61, also from Amble, said: “It’s great, especially the little business incubator units. Anything that improves Amble and links the harbour with the town is great.”
The plans are due to be heard at the county council’s north area planning committee tonight.