Rossendale Free Press

County provide cash boost to square revamp

- PAUL FAULKNER Local Democracy Reporter

LANCASHIRE County Council has stumped up £350,000 to help complete two town centre upgrade schemes which are short of cash.

County Hall will provide the funding to Rossendale and Pendle councils for projects to revamp parts of Rawtenstal­l and Barnoldswi­ck respective­ly. The borough authoritie­s approached the county council to request that it match the amounts they are each contributi­ng towards the work in their areas.

An urgent decision was taken last month by county leader Geoff Driver and his deputy Keith Iddon to issue up to £150,000 to Rossendale for the project in Rawtenstal­l.

A report detailing the decision notes that the county’s contributi­on will “improve accessibil­ity, [and make the areas] more attractive for residents, businesses and visitors”.

It adds: “It is also envisaged that the additional and new investment will assist in post-Covid-19 economic recovery programmes, focusing upon kickstarti­ng further growth, jobs and investment.”

The County Hall cash will contribute towards the completion of a redesigned town square, close to the separate multi-million pound scheme to refurbish the Old Town Hall and create a new bus station.

The county council report notes that it will “transform a neglected piece of landscape” at the heart of the town and create “an outside meeting point, which is particular­ly important during Covid”.

Both projects were deemed to be high value for money for Lancashire

County Council because of the investment already being made by the two district authoritie­s. Grant funding agreements will now be entered into with both boroughs.

The county council may have to borrow to fund its share of the investment, at an annual cost of £26,250 for the next 20 years.

However, if the schemes are judged to meet the criteria for the Lancashire Economic Recovery Grant programme - for which bids are being considered - the money could come from that exisitng pot instead.

 ??  ?? ●● Rawtenstal­l town square proposals
●● Rawtenstal­l town square proposals

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from UK