Green light to build recovery




Ten major development schemes in Lancashire have been given the government go-ahead and cash backing from the £34.1m awarded to the county through the Getting Building Fund.

The fund is part of a national drive to minimise the negative impact of the Covid-19 pandemic on the economy and deliver jobs and green recovery.

Steve Fogg, who chairs the Lancashire Enterprise Partnership said securing the funding for the ten projects, which include the extension of Blackpool's Houndshill centre, was “fantastic news” for the county.

He said: “Money received from this fund will be invested in projects which will create jobs and invest in much needed infrastructure improvements, helping the county recover and bounce back quicker from the pandemic.”

The chosen schemes are ‘shovel-ready’ and have demonstrated the ability to “accelerate growth and create employment”.

They range from town centre regeneration projects to high-end research and development facilities such as the Lancashire Centre for Alternative Technologies.

The projects that have secured funding and the amounts they have received, in round figures, are:

  • Houndshill Extension Scheme, Blackpool (£5m)
  • Abingdon Street Market Acquisition and Rejuvenation, Blackpool (£3.63m)
  • Alker Lane, Chorley (£2.25m)
  • Pioneer Place, Burnley (£3.68m)
  • Lancashire Centre for Alternative Technologies – ‘RedCat’ (£1.5m)
  • Low Carbon Manufacturing Building Demonstrator (AMRC), South Ribble and Ribble Valley (£2.5m)
  • Project Neptune, Fleetwood (£4.03m)
  • Hillhouse Enterprise Zone, Wyre (£0.5m)
  • M55 Link Road, Fylde (£5.79m)
  • The Tatton Scheme, Chorley (£5.2m)

Steve Fogg added:  ''Working closely with all Lancashire local authorities, Sarah Kemp, the chief executive of the LEP and her team, have over the past couple of weeks identified a final list of projects across the county which can start almost immediately, be completed within 18 months and which can deliver jobs and green recovery. 

“The fact that Lancashire has managed to secure a significant amount of funding is testament to the collaborative working between the LEP and its partners to work together to help protect Lancashire's businesses and the livelihoods of our residents.

''All of the successful ten schemes have demonstrated they have the ability to accelerate growth and create employment, and we have chosen a really good mix of projects which will have an impact across the whole of the county.” 

He added: “Each day we are hearing of failing businesses and people losing their jobs.  The projects which have secured the funding are expected to create over 1,500 jobs for the county, as well as enabling our businesses to become more competitive and take advantage of the opportunities arising from new technologies. 

“This a really positive start for the county as we begin our economic recovery in the 'new normal' and I am hoping this will be the first of a number of support interventions which we will secure for Lancashire.”