News - 04 March 2019

£1.6billion ‘Stronger Towns Fund’ announced by Government

A £1.6billion ‘Stronger Towns Fund’, announced by Government today (March 4), has been welcomed by the D2N2 Local Enterprise Partnership.

It will be targeted at places seen as in greater need to create jobs, improve skills and boost economic activity, said Prime Minister Theresa May.

To be launched this year (2019), the Fund will see £1billion of its money allocated on a needs-based formula; with £110million of the total allocated to towns in the East Midlands. It is not yet known how much will be invested in Nottinghamshire and Derbyshire. All funding will be allocated over a seven year period.

Communities Secretary James Brokenshire MP (pictured above) said: “This major new Fund builds on more than £9billion in City and Growth Deals we have delivered since 2010, to help hardworking people reach their full potential and to build an economy that works for everyone.

“I look forward to working closely with local leaders to take forward their encouraging proposals and to hear what more they propose to bring benefits to their communities.”

Elizabeth Fagan, Chair of the D2N2 Local Enterprise Partnership, added: “We welcome this additional funding from the UK Government. Town centres provide jobs, a launch pad for new businesses, community and leisure activities, and contribute greatly to our area’s productivity; but many of them have faced challenges with changes to the face of the high street.

“As part of D2N2’s vision of a growing economy which benefits all, a main plank of our Strategic Economic Plan for the area, D2N2 has invested significantly in town centre spaces; not least through the £7.6million it has put into Nottinghamshire County Council’s £20m ‘Unlocking Growth in N2 Town Centres’ programme, to reinvigorate county town and local centres.”

Other recent activities to regenerate town centres in the D2N2 area, with which the LEP has been involved, include: 

  • official opening of The Cotgrave Hub community spot, part of a wider £8m scheme which received £1.2m from D2N2; 
  • a £300,000 scheme to improve the Bulwell Market area and help local traders, with a third of that funding from D2N2; 
  • the £1.8m refurbishment of the Idlewells Shopping Centre indoor market, Sutton-in-Ashfield, (£375,000 from the D2N2 LEP); 
  • launch of the ‘Made in Derby’ tourism walk in Derby city centre; part of a wider £1.9m improvement project which received £1.6m from D2N2.

The D2N2 Local Enterprise Partnership is the private sector-led partnership of business, local authorities, skills and training providers, and community and voluntary services providers which promotes economic growth, jobs and business start-ups in Derby, Derbyshire, Nottingham and Nottinghamshire.

Most of the D2N2 funding for the above town centres schemes came from the LEP’s Local Growth Fund allocation. This is funding via the UK Government for the LEP to jointly invest in infrastructure projects, which can be shown to directly boost its area’s economy.

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For more on the new £1.6billion ‘Stronger Towns Fund’ see Government web link www.gov.uk/government/news/16-billion-stronger-towns-fund-launched

Further information on how the D2N2 LEP uses its Local Growth Fund allocation to help its area’s economy and a list of LGF projects can be found on its website at www.d2n2lep.org/Local-Growth-Fund

Media wanting more information about the D2N2 LEP can contact D2N2 Communications Manager Sean Kirby on 0115 9578749 and email: sean.kirby@d2n2lep.org

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