£675m Future High Streets fund opens to councils
Under the 2018 Autumn budget the Ministry of Housing, Communities & Local Government was allocated £675m for a new initiative to transform local high streets into modern vibrant community hubs. Councils across the country are now being invited urged to bid for a share of the pot in order to consolidate properties on the high street, improve transport and access into town centres and convert retail units into new homes.
Places bidding for the fund will be supported by the High Streets Task Force, which will be established in 2019 and will support local leadership. Up to £55m of the fund has also been allocated to support the regeneration of ‘heritage high streets’. Bids will help to restore historic high street properties for new work spaces or cultural venues.
High streets minister Jake Berry said: “We all know high streets are changing, we can’t hide from this reality. But we’re determined to ensure they continue sit at the heart of our communities for generations to come.
“To do this we have to support investment in infrastructure, boosting local economies and ensuring people are able to get the most out of their local high streets. Empowering leaders on the ground is key too – they best understand the challenges facing their areas.
“Our Future High Streets Fund will drive forward this change, transforming our town centres into the thriving community hubs of the future.”