Future High Streets Fund could be valuable boost for Stalybridge town centre plans

THE Stalybridge Town Centre Challenge could stake a claim to a share of a £675 million pot of government money.

Cllr Liam Billington

Cllr Liam Billington, who represents Stalybridge South, believes the government’s Future High Streets Fund, announced in the recent Budget, could help make plans to regenerate the town centre become a reality.

He has asked Cllr Doreen Dickinson to bring up the Future High Streets Fund at the next meeting of the Town Centre Challenge Board.

Cllr Billington said: “This is a pot worth £675m and Tameside will get a slice of it – just as it has done with the £420m for road repairs for local authorities.

“Tameside got £1.029m for road repairs in this year’s budget.”

Cllr Billington spoke about how Tameside has benefited from money to repair potholes.

He said: “In 2016/17, the government gave Tameside a grant of £117,000 to repair potholes. 

“Tameside’s own figures say it costs £46.23 per square metre to repair potholes.

“That enabled Tameside Council to carry out of 2,531m2 road resurfacing to fix potholes. 

“So at £1.029m the council will be able to carry out 22,258m2 of road repairs.”

The government, in its publicity for the Future High Streets Fund, said: “High streets lie at the heart of our communities and local economies, creating jobs, nurturing small businesses and injecting billions of pounds into our economy. 

“But the way we shop and the way that communities use their high streets is changing: we’re shopping more online, making fewer big shopping trips and shopping ‘little and more often.’ 

“This changes the nature of what makes a high street successful.

“The government is committed to helping local high streets evolve and adapt to these changes. 

“We want to encourage vibrant town centres where people live, shop, use services, and spend their leisure time.

“The Future High Streets Fund will support and fund local areas’ plans to make their high streets and town centres fit for the future.”

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