More than half a million pounds to be invested in Scunthorpe town centre

16:21, Friday, 27th September 2019

To support the regeneration of Scunthorpe town centre, £260,000 funding has been secured from the Government via the Humber High Street Challenge Fund, which will be match funded.

The £1.95m Humber High Street Challenge Fund is launching on Tuesday 1 October.

Grants will be available under the scheme to encourage private sector landlords and property owners to undertake building and conversion projects that will improve high streets, diversifying the traditional retail offer and bringing unused floor space back into use.

North Lincolnshire Council was successful in its bid to receive a £260,000 share of Humber LEP’s Humber High Street Challenge Fund – funded by the Government’s Local Growth Fund as part of their commitment to the Northern Powerhouse.

Match funding for the scheme will come from private sector investments that are keen to play a part in developing Scunthorpe town centre.

Through the funding, the council aims to tackle vacant retail units across Scunthorpe town centre, re-purpose them into residential use, office/start-up space and improve shop frontages.

The project supports the council’s multi-million pound regeneration plans to develop Scunthorpe town centre as the best place to invest, work, live and visit.

Organisations and individuals can apply for funding by submitting an expression of interest by contacting the Economic Growth team on 01724 297000 or emailing businessinfo@northlincs.gov.uk.

In addition to this, the council can also bid for a share of the Government’s £1 billion Future High Streets Fund. This will see plans drawn up to redevelop Scunthorpe town centre in line with the council’s regeneration plans.

Money from the funds can be used to improve transport and access into town centres, convert empty retail units into new homes and workplaces and invest in vital infrastructure.

Cllr Rob Waltham, Leader of North Lincolnshire Council, said:

“The Humber High Street Challenge Fund is a major investment that supports our wider regeneration plans to transform Scunthorpe town centre. It is part of a stream of funding the Government is releasing to support our economic plans, including the Future High Streets Fund.

“The town centre is already a changing landscape due to the way town centres are now used, and this funding will encourage any vacant units to be brought back into use. Whether the units would be used for housing, office space, food outlets or a leisure facilities, all interest will be considered.

“The funding is open to organisations and individuals who are keen to invest in Scunthorpe town centre and have viable ideas to bring empty properties back into use.

“Free car parking has already provided hundreds of thousands of new visitors to Scunthorpe and this extra money will help create jobs and grow the local economy.

“We are also currently putting together our bid for the £25m that the Government has allocated towards a town deal for Scunthorpe town centre.”

The Humber High Street Challenge Fund will also deliver investment in the following high street and town centre areas in the Humber region:

  • Hull City Council: Whitefriargate in Hull Old Town
  • East Riding of Yorkshire: Clock Tower area of Goole
  • North East Lincolnshire: Kasbah area of Grimsby

The targeted investment will deliver early improvement works in advance of larger scale investments sought from the Government’s Future High Streets Fund and could see the creation of over 270 jobs, with over 6,500 sqm of commercial floor space brought back into use across the Humber region.

Further information on the scheme is available on the project website.

Lord Chris Haskins, Chair of the Humber Local Enterprise Partnership, said:

“I am delighted the Humber High Street Challenge Fund has been officially launched, we believe it can make a real difference to the region’s high streets.

“Measures such as diversification and repurposing of traditional retail spaces, including converting buildings for new uses, have the potential to breathe new life into our town and city centres, helping the Humber remain an attractive place to live and work.

“I am delighted that the Humber’s Local Growth Fund allocation, which we have secured from Government, is supporting the regeneration of the region’s high streets and can have a positive impact for our residents, businesses and visitors alike.”