Rossendale Free Press

LAND VALUE WAS CRUCIAL

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FOLLOWING the headlines in last week’s Free Press, I’d just like to expand on the reasons why the bid for Bacup to benefit from the Future High Street funding was unsuccessf­ul.

The final criteria for the bid was based on land value, and the uplift in the value if the bid was successful.

The value of land in Bacup is very low compared with other areas in the country, so the uplift was inevitably going to be less than in other areas, which could then - on paper - appear to offer better value for money.

Frustratin­g though that is, there is a transparen­t calculatio­n and presumably this is what Jake Berry MP was referring to when he was interviewe­d recently on the radio and referred to the fact that the system unfairly disadvanta­ges the North.

To take just one example - the Old Kent Road in London was awarded £11 million - so the problem is quite clear.

There are other funds we could have approached - for example, Darwen and Nelson are bidding to different funds - but Bacup better met other aspects of the Future High Street Fund. Still, it was an unsuccessf­ul bid and we will be using the data collected to submit another bid to another fund at the first opportunit­y - new funds are made available regularly and residents can be assured that with the backing of our MP we will continue with our ambitious plans for Bacup. Jackie Oakes

Deputy Leader - Rossendale Council

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