Weston focus in national ‘Coastal Community & Creative Health’ partnership

10 April 2024

A national partnership to tackle health inequalities in coastal communities is underway following a recent £2.4 million funding award by UK Research and Innovation (UKRI) under its Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC). 

Alongside Blackpool and Hastings, Weston-super-Mare is one of three focus areas for the project, led by researchers at the Universities of Bristol and Liverpool – respectively Dr Lucy Selman, Associate Professor from the Centre for Academic Primary Care and Palliative and End of Life Care Research Group at the University of Bristol and a Weston-super-Mare resident, and Dr Barbara Mezes, Lecturer in Clinical Psychology at the Institute of Population Health

Titled ‘Coastal Community & Creative Health’, the three-year project will bring the NHS, local authorities, researchers, voluntary and community organisations and residents together to tackle health inequalities. It will focus in particular on three mental health priority areas in coastal towns: young people’s mental health, substance misuse, and life-limiting illness and bereavement.

The Partnership extends the work of the Weston-super-Mare Community Network, also funded by the AHRC, which, since November 2022, has been uniting diverse stakeholders across North Somerset to tackle inequities in serious illness and bereavement and the social isolation which can result from these universal experiences. 

As part of this, an inaugural Festival ‘Good Grief Weston was produced by Super Culture in May 2023, which offered a diverse programme of events including a ‘Super Synchro’ swimming display at the town’s Marine Lake. Super Culture is looking forward to collaborating with the partnership again to bring a second edition of the festival to Weston in the Autumn.  

For more information about the national project, go to https://www.bristol.ac.uk/primaryhealthcare/news/2024/national-partnership-to-tackle-health-inequalities-.html


Lead image by Paul Blakemore