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East Midlands Chamber News

D2N2 commits £7.6m to reinvigorate town centres

Funding worth £7.6m to help reinvigorate Nottinghamshire town and local centres has been agreed, via the D2N2 Local Enterprise Partnership.

Nottinghamshire County Council’s £20m ‘Unlocking Growth in N2 Town Centres’ Programme covers seven major projects, designed to improve and instil growth in the county’s town centres.
The seven individual projects initially seeking funding via the Programme are as follows:
•Kirkby-in-Ashfield leisure centre and town centre redevelopment, in the Ashfield District Council area
•Re-invigorating Upper Bridge Street, Worksop, scheme (Bassetlaw District Council)
•Beeston Square Phase 2 redevelopment (Broxtowe Borough Council)
•Arnold Market/Arnold town centre scheme (Gedling Borough Council)
•Carlton Square (Gedling Borough Council)
•Mansfield Old Town Hall redevelopment (Mansfield District Council)
•Newark Buttermarket redevelopment (Newark & Sherwood District Council).

The overall programme aims to deliver improvements to the town and local centres to help them attract more shoppers and visitors, improve accessibility, create new jobs, bring in new businesses and investment, reduce the number of vacant retail units, and offer more attractive places to work and live.

A business case will have to be put forward for each individual project, most of which are due to begin this year (2018).

Nottinghamshire County Council, responsible for the programme, estimates that in total the seven projects listed could create around 612 jobs, with more to come should additional projects come forward.

D2N2 has agreed to invest £7.6m in the programme, following approval by the D2N2 Infrastructure and Investment Board. The individual projects will each lever in additional public and private sector investment, crucial to the wider development ambitions.

The LEP is the private sector-led partnership of business, local authorities, skills and training providers, and community and voluntary services representatives which promotes economic and jobs growth across Derby, Derbyshire, Nottingham and Nottinghamshire. Its funding resources includes an allocation of around £250m from the Government’s Local Growth Fund (LGF) which part-funds infrastructure projects directly benefiting the Government.

Matthew Wheatley, Chief Executive at D2N2, said: “Thriving town and local centres are vital for wider economic growth; providing people with nearby job opportunities, leisure activities, and easily accessible retail and business services which reduce their need to travel further afield.

“D2N2 understands this, which is why we are making a major and long-term investment in Nottinghamshire centres, through this County Council-led programme.”

Councillor Kay Cutts, Leader of Nottinghamshire County Council, said: “Improving our town centres will play a vital role in helping us to fulfil our ambition of making Nottinghamshire a great place to live, work and visit.

“I am delighted that the County Council and its partners have secured the go-ahead for this vital programme, bringing much-needed investment to a number of our centres.

“We will be working closely with our partners in the respective areas to ensure that good quality projects come forward, responsive to the changing needs and circumstances within each of the town centres.”

Similar projects to regenerate local centres, which received LGF funding in 2017 via D2N2, include the Ada Lovelace House redevelopment by Ashfield DC and Nottingham City Council’s improvements to the Bulwell Market area.