Wakefield and Castleford among 100 places invited to bid for a share of a £3.6bn funding pot

Both Wakefield and Castleford are among 100 places being invited to bid for a share of a £3.6bn funding pot announced by the Government today.

Friday, 6th September 2019, 1:58 pm
Updated Friday, 6th September 2019, 2:58 pm
Both Wakefield and Castleford are among 100 places being invited to bid for a share of a 3.6bn funding pot announced by the Government today.

The Government says the list of places eligible for support from the Towns Fund includes locations with "proud industrial and economic heritage that have not always benefited from economic growth in the same way as more prosperous areas".

Communities, businesses and local leaders in each will now have the chance to draw up plans with the potential to transform their town’s economic growth prospects, with a focus on improved transport, broadband connectivity, skills and culture.

It represents, the Government says, evidence of its commitment to support all regions by boosting productivity, skills and living standards.

Announcing the fund, Local Government Secretary Robert Jenrick 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 £25m 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.”

Northern Powerhouse and Local Growth Minister Jake Berry said the Government was reaffirming its commitment to the people of the North.

“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 £3.6bn fund to drive jobs and economic growth," he said.

“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 October 31.”

It follows the Prime Minister’s confirmation in July of an additional £1.325bn to support towns as part of a renewed vision for addressing inequality between the regions, which took the total value of the Towns Fund to £3.6bn.

The Government will soon publish a prospectus to guide towns through the process and set eligibility criteria for funding.

Decisions on funding any proposals would be made in due course, it said.

The full list of towns in the region and their local authority is:

Brighouse (Calderdale)

Castleford (Wakefield)

Dewsbury (Kirklees)

Doncaster (Doncaster)

Goldthorpe (Barnsley)

Goole (East Riding)

Keighley and Shipley (Bradford)

Morley (Leeds)

Rotherham (Rotherham)

Scarborough (Scarborough)

Scunthorpe (North Lincolnshire)

Stainforth (Doncaster)

Stocksbridge (Sheffield)

Todmorden (Calderdale)

Wakefield (Wakefield)

Whitby (Scarborough)