Local Benefits

How will Harbourside benefit the local area?

Key to the success of Harbourside is an inspirational and innovative proposal that supports national, regional and local regeneration strategies and initiatives, with outcomes linked to public, private and third sectors. Working together, we strategically strive to tackle key issues such as levels of economic activity, jobs and employment prospects, healthier communities, sustaining the natural environment and the preservation of an historic and successful Welsh coastal community.


With the potential to tap into world-wide visitors, an ever-growing rise in tourism rates, and gaps in the market in relation to regional high quality tourist destinations, Harbourside has the potential to build on Porthcawl’s impressive base-line of visitor/tourism growth and associated expenditure.

Number of trips has increased by over 27.2%
Number of nights has increased by 36.7%.
Visitor expenditure has increased 33.3%


"As a major business organisation within the town, Porthcawl Chamber of Trade and Commerce fully supports the harbour area project and is enthusiastic about it. We are looking forward to it being progressed as quickly as possible."

Chris Smart, President, Porthcawl Chamber of Trade and Commerce


With opportunities linked to project build, day-to-day management and delivery of Harbourside facilities and activities, regional and sub-regional spin off employment and future growth- supported by key stakeholders such as Jobcentre Plus- the Harbourside development and associated Maritime Leisure Complex will provide significant stimulation to the local economy. The initial phases have the potential to create in the region of between 50-100 direct and indirect jobs and associated economic activity.

Harbourside Potential Employment Opportunities



Endorsed and supported by local schools, colleges and universities, themes linked to education and training have been highlighted during consultations with students of all ages and abilities which they feel the Harbourside development should address and support. The following key themes have been agreed, which the students feel will add value to their overall learning experience:

  • Science and Technology.
  • Sports.
  • Community.
  • Heritage.

Facilities within Harbourside could well include access to:

  • Interactive rooms, indoor and outdoor facilities and classes.
  • Wi-Fi and iPads, simulator, music creators, QR codes links to documents and pages.
  • Laboratory, microscopes and science led practical sessions for schools to utilise.
  • 3D exhibits, films and models.
  • Sustainable building and renewable energy knowledge and expertise.
  • Welsh heritage – timeline links to Porthcawl town and Harbour heritage – practical demonstrations for younger children.
  • An understanding of coal mining, docks, trains, ship wrecks, exports, imports.
  • Historical re-enactments, viewing screen, live performances.
  • Field trips – studying and understanding architecture, historical buildings, future plans.
  • History themed Laser Quest.
  • Paintings, drawings, graffiti, expert led sessions.
  • Drama/poetry.
  • ‘Night at the Museum’ experiences.
  • Maritime Aquatic Centre, plants and animals, watching wildlife through glass floor, snorkeling, boat trips.
  • Local wildlife, geography field trips, fossil exhibitions, climbing wall, gym, fitness classes, wet suit hire.
  • Kayaks, surfing, open water swimming, pier jumping, high ropes, diving, jet ski, beach games, sand dune training.
  • Team building work. Fishing.


Harbourside will play a key and integral role in tackling worrying statistics that include 59% of people aged 16 years plus across the County Borough of Bridgend being overweight or obese.

Linked to a maritime theme and Porthcawl’s internationally renowned surfing and sailing facilities, Harbourside will provide a host of opportunities for individuals to improve their fitness and general wellbeing.

In addition to the Waverider, training pool and Spa facilities, Harbourside will enable access to Health, Wellbeing & Fitness Suites. This will include oxygen tanks, physio, hydrotherapy or simply will be a place to meet friends, unwind and enjoy healthy home grown food and refreshments.


There can be no doubt that building on Porthcawl’s rich and historic history and heritage, Harbourside can play a significant, ‘once in a lifetime’ role in shaping the future heritage and history of Porthcawl as a ‘leading, innovative and exciting South Wales seaside town and destination’, which builds on the Welsh Government’s Vibrant and Viable Places ‘Place-based approach’ strategy:

A place-based approach has been recognised as a successful approach to creating physical and environmental improvements to an area. It is particularly recognised that settlements are key to regeneration and that there is growing need for town centre and seaside town regeneration. These can create a developmental hub in a region, which has wider economic impact as a place of employment, leisure activity and location of public services.