Government Pledge £3.6 Billion To Improve Town Prosperity
The Government has pledged £3.6 billion to a Towns Fund aiming to grow and support struggling locations.
Overall, 100 locations have been invited to develop proposals and apply to the fund in a bid to improve transport, broadband connectivity, skills and culture.
The majority of locations, chosen to improve the prosperity of their areas, were based outside of southern England. 45 places were based across the Northern powerhouse with 30 in the East Midlands.
The announcement follows Boris Johnson’s previous pledge of £1.325 billion to support and help towns.
The Government further promised that local communities will have a say in how the money is spent in their area. They have also claimed that all funds will be used to ‘provide vital social and cultural infrastructure and boost growth.’
A prospectus to guide towns through the process as well as providing greater clarity on funding eligibility criteria will be released in the near future.
Robert Jenrick MP, Local Government Secretary, said:
“Ensuring that prosperity and opportunities are available to everyone in this country, not just those in London or our biggest cities, is at the heart of the mission of this government.
“We want to level-up our great towns, raising living standards and ensuring they can thrive with transformative investment in transport, technology, skills and culture.
“I will now work with local people from the 100 communities announced today to agree proposals to invest up to £25 million in each place. I hope these deals will provide the investment and the impetus for long-term renewal ensuring each town can look to the future with a new optimism.”
Jake Berry MP, Minister for the Northern Powerhouse and Local Growth, said:
“In July, the Prime Minister promised to level up 100 towns across the country, and today we’re delivering that promise.
“The best answers for local people will come from local people, that’s why we have listened to people living in these towns and will support them with a mega £3.6 billion fund to drive jobs and economic growth.
“Five years on from the launch of the Northern Powerhouse, we are reaffirming our commitment to the people of the North so they have the support they need to be at the leading edge of a confident, global Britain when we leave the EU on 31st October.”
Will this fund improve the prosperity of struggling towns? Is more funding needed to help improve vital infrastructure?