On Sunday 1 October, Prime Minister Rishi Sunak announced £20 million of funding for Accrington.
‘Long-term Plan for Towns’ will empower communities across the UK to take back control of their future – taking long term decisions in the interests of local people. Funding is to be spent on local priorities, reviving high streets, tackling ASB, improving transport and growing the local economy.
Hyndburn is one of 55 towns that will benefit from the £1.1 billion levelling up investment.
[Picture: Cllr Younis and Sara Britcliffe at Accrington Market Hall]
Cllr Younis, Portfolio Holder for Levelling Up at Hyndburn Borough Council, said:
“This is a fantastic opportunity to develop a long-term plan to be supported by our Town Board. The tools will be provided to make real lasting change to Accrington’s future and I am very pleased that it will mean local people will be put in charge of steering this funding. I am looking forward to working with the Board, local businesses, the community, Councillors and our MP Sara Britcliffe.”
Under the new approach, local people will be put in charge, and given the tools to change their town’s long-term future. They will:
- Receive a ten-year £20 million endowment-style fund to be spent on local people’s priorities, like regenerating local high streets and town centres or securing public safety.
- Utilise the Town Board to bring together community leaders, employers, local authorities, and the local MP, to deliver the Long-Term Plan for their town and put it to local people for consultation.
- Use a suite of regeneration powers to unlock more private sector investment by auctioning empty high street shops, reforming licensing rules on shops and restaurants, and supporting more housing in town centres.
David Sanderson, CEO Rank Foundation and Chair of Accrington’s Town Centre Partnership Board, said:
“I am sure all of Hyndburn will join me in welcoming this fantastic news. This £20million will support long-term ambitions and work in tandem with the funding we have already received. This new approach means the way the money is spent will be steered directly by local people through the Town Board. People who live in the area will be at the heart of the decisions and I am looking forward to being part of the next stage in Accrington’s transformation.”
Cllr Marlene Haworth, Leader of Hyndburn Borough Council, said:
“What wonderful news for our borough. This news means that in just 18 months, we have secured over £60million of funding, mostly through the Government’s Levelling Up Fund. Not only will this enable Accrington’s transformation, but it will also mean more resources can be freed up to support the outer townships too. I am really pleased with this news and looking forward to being part of the wider community involvement in steering projects and plans.”