A CASH-STRAPPED region has got a £30,000 grant – for a feasibility study into an art project.

The study will look at creating parkland featuring art and architecture around Jaywick Martello Tower and in Brooklands Gardens East.

Residents from the depressed area reacted with anger to the news, saying the money would be better used repairing their crumbling infrastructure.

Pauline Bailey, of Riley Avenue, Jaywick, said the reaction of the average Jaywick resident would be “unrepeatable” if they heard what was being spent on “so-called-art”.

She said: “It just beggars belief.

But Jaywick Forum member Ian Burritt said: “I would be in favour of any arts project if it promoted Jaywick's need for regeneration, and that is basically why we are getting all these arts.”

He compared it to the recent, highly controversial decision to put a £40,000 temporary artwork by Nathan Coley into the Brooklands area.

He said: “The Nathan Coley Project, I was all for it. It actually brought the attention that Jaywick needed to highlight its problems.”

Essex County Council suggested the project and bid for the funding.

The plans would involve local people working with “facilitating artists” to plan “an innovative and environmentally friendly landscape design that deals directly with the issue of flood plain and sea shore" said their spokeswoman, Katie Canning.

For the full story, see the Clacton Gazette on Thursday.