WARRINGTON’S Town Deal ambitions have been given a huge boost, after confirmation of £22.1 million funding as part of the scheme to fund seven key projects in the town.
The news comes after the council submitted Warrington’s town investment plan earlier this year in August, in which Warrington was in the first cohort of towns eligible to bid for funding as part of the Towns Find initiative, to submit a plan.
Confirmation from government that Warrington will receive £22.1 million funding for the projects in scope of the town investment plan means that Warrington is one of only seven towns that has been successful so far in securing funding.
Warrington’s town investment plan sought funding for seven key projects that would help to unleash the town centre’s potential. This included:
·A health and social care academy – which will offer opportunities to build a social care workforce in Warrington fit for the future.
·A health and wellbeing hub in the town centre – which will help reduce health deprivation and improve quality of life, as well as increasing accessibility to healthcare and wellbeing services
·An advanced construction training centre – which will develop sustainable building skills and provide an opportunity to reskill people in sectors that have declined during the COVID-19 pandemic.
·A new bus depot – which will provide the stimulus for the land on which to deliver sustainable housing.
·A comprehensive active travel programme – putting in place the right infrastructure to encourage more walking and cycling throughout the town centre
·A digital enterprise hub – which would be aimed at supporting all aspects of digital and disruptive technologies.
·A remastered cultural hub at the Pyramid – which will nurture the arts professionals of the future, providing a modern and flexible creative space to collaborate, produce, present and perform
Chair of Warrington’s Town Deal Board and MD of Muse Developments, Matt Crompton, said: “To receive such positive news in the current circumstances is validation that the investment proposal we put forward was the right plan for Warrington.
“I’m pleased to see our collective hard work pay off and I’m excited about what this positive funding news means for the future of our town centre.”
Leader of the Council, Cllr Russ Bowden, said: “I am delighted to see that we have been successful in securing this level of funding for our town centre, which will help us to deliver a string of truly transformative projects.
“Whilst the sum awarded is a little less than the £26 million we initially bid for, we are happy with this funding award, especially in the current climate. It’s great news for Warrington and will give our economy a real shot in the arm at a crucial time.
“I’d like to thank Matt Crompton, as well as the council officers and leisure, education and business leaders who also formed this group and who showed such an ambitious, collective vision for our town. I am pleased to see the work of our Town Deal board pay off and it’s good to see that our vision for Warrington has been recognised.
Over the next three to five weeks, the government is expected to sign the Heads of Terms, which will pave the way to the next stage, which is to develop detailed business cases for each project.
For more information about Warrington’s Town Deal, visit warrington.gov.uk/my-town