Stockport shortlisted in next round of Future High Street Fund

Town is one of 50 across the country to be invited to next stage of government-backed fund

Stockport shortlisted in next round of Future High Street Fund

STOCKPORT has been shortlisted in the next stage of a government-backed fund that has been created to help transform town centres across the UK.

The town is among 50 areas across the country to be invited to the second phase of the £675million Future High Streets Fund.

The government wants to help local high streets become even more vibrant where people live, shop, use services, and spend their leisure time.

In the initial bid stage, Stockport Council made an application to create a cultural, community and social hub for the whole of the town centre, in the heart of Merseyway.

A successful bid would complement the investment plans for the shopping centre, which were approved by council members in November 2018.

The plans for Merseyway are part of the authority’s £1billion investment programme aimed at transforming the town.

The council will now receive up to £150,000 of new funding from the Future High Streets Fund to work up a detailed project proposal, based on its initial plan.

Cllr David Meller, Cabinet member for Economy and Regeneration, said: “We’re absolutely ecstatic to have reached the second stage of this process. Everyone has worked incredibly hard on this bid, it is clear their pride, and passion for our town is paying off.

“We’re now looking forward to building a business case that will support and build on our vision of transforming Merseyway and our town centre so it’s fit not only for the present, but for the future as well.

“This is an incredibly exciting time for Stockport, with the borough’s potential now being truly realised through Stockport Exchange, the success of Redrock and the growth in and around the market place.

“There’s still a lot to do – it will take time to get where we want to be and we need to bring people with us on our journey, so to speak. But if we’re successful in the next stage of the funding bid, we’ll be able to ensure our town centre is fit for future generations to enjoy and has something that appeals to everyone.”

The next phase of the Future High Streets Fund will involve the council submitting a detailed business case over the next six to nine months.