An analysis of surfing and its contribution to coastal town regeneration: everybody's gone surfin'?

Thompson, Gary (2010) An analysis of surfing and its contribution to coastal town regeneration: everybody's gone surfin'? MSc dissertation, University of Portsmouth.

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    Over the past four decades many seaside and coastal towns in the UK have suffered from economic decline and underinvestment. Now, during a period where coastal towns are seeking innovative ways to effect regeneration, investigations into the activity of surfing indicated that little research has been undertaken in the UK to identify its actual, or potential, popularity, and the current and future economic value it can offer to coastal towns and communities. The research undertook field surveys in three separate surf locations: Bournemouth, Newquay and Scarborough, utilising a face‐to‐face, self‐completion‐questionnaire.

    Data was collected from participants partaking in the activity of surfing (participants), surf retailers, hire companies and local surfing tutors (service providers), and the appropriate governance. Case studies have been utilised to compare economic and environmental impacts and comparative governance decisions where appropriate.

    The analysis of the data, using SPSS 16, was undertaken using descriptive and correlational statistical techniques, which provided various profile models, including average UK surfer demographic characteristics, spending and accommodation habits, and an estimated figure of £170 million per annum, representing UK surfer direct spend.

    The research identified economic opportunities yet to be exploited, and shows evidence of surfing‐oriented coastal development and inward migration of young professionals to coastal towns. Environmental conservation and benefits from good health, well‐being and the ‘feel‐good‐factor’ attainable through surfing and effective integrated coastal zone management were discussed and considered to be as important to coastal regeneration as the economic benefits. This research indicated that surfing can be an economic and environmental tool for the regeneration of coastal towns that possess appropriate surf conditions.

    Item Type: Dissertation
    Departments/Research Groups: Faculty of Science > Department of Geography
    Depositing User: Jane Polwin
    Date Deposited: 01 Feb 2011 09:36
    Last Modified: 24 Jul 2015 10:13

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