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Board puts pen to paper for £25 million funding for town centre projects

Article date - 11 August 2021

Major investment in St Helens Town Centre has moved one step closer as agreements are signed with government for £25m funding.
town deal signing.jpg

Last week members of St Helens Town Deal Board unanimously agreed to sign the Heads of Terms with government on a £25 million package of projects submitted to Ministers earlier this year through the Town Deal Fund.

Work is now underway on developing the detailed business cases for the exciting projects in the Town Investment Plan, which was created by the board members representing local public sector organisations, business leaders, members of the voluntary community and politicians.

Chairman of St Helens Town Deal Board John Tabern signed the agreement, and said: “I’m delighted we can put pen to paper on accepting the £25 million from the Town Deal Fund, our Town Deal Investment Plan has rightly been recognised by Government as a positive plan to reshape St Helens Town Centre. The amount of funding we received constituted the highest ever award for a Labour controlled Local Authority, which is testament to the strength of the plan we submitted. Now the real work starts to assess the best way to make the projects contained in the plan, a reality. Whilst at the same time transforming the town centre and helping to open up further opportunities for investment in our vision.” 

The Town Investment Plan projects include expanding on Glass Futures, the innovative research facility which will be built next to the Totally Wicked Stadium, as well as creating new town centre living, creating a better-connected town centre with new walking and cycling routes, supporting healthy communities through the creation of a youth zone and health innovation hub, improving digital infrastructure to help businesses grow online, and enhancing our rich local heritage through the development of a St Helens Heritage World.

In addition to the £25 million from the Town Deal Fund, the six projects outlined in the Investment Plan are set to generate significant match funding from local organisations and other funding sources, complementing the wider regeneration which will be delivered via the council’s partnership with English Cities Fund.  

Councillor David Baines, Leader of St Helens Borough Council, said: “Our success in winning an offer of £25m is testament to the quality of our bid and the hard work of the board and Chairman John Tabern. Signing the Heads of Terms agreement is another milestone moment as we continue working together with the local private, public and third sector to transform St Helens town centre, and I’m looking forward to sharing more information about our progress in the months ahead.”