Six towns across the borough of Telford and Wrekin are to benefit from a share of a £1m investment pot to upgrade their High Streets over the next two years.
Wellington, Ironbridge, Dawley, Madeley, Newport and Oakengates will all receive additional investment from the council’s Pride in Our Community High Street Fund, with £500,000 allocated in each year.
This is an extension of the existing council’s Pride in Our Community High Street Fund investment scheme and has been made possible following changes to the council’s finances including a one off VAT refund.
The £1m investment is part of a series of new one off investments which will total £3.6m.
The council’s Pride in Our Community High Street Fund money will be used to bring currently empty High Street units back into use, improve shop facades and continue the Young High Street Challenge scheme to engage more young people.
Councillor Lee Carter, Telford & Wrekin Council’s cabinet member for Economic Development, said: “High Streets are vital for bringing communities together – they are places to shop, meet friends and enjoy ourselves.
“We know there are challenges and finding ways to support local businesses and regenerate High Street requires creative thinking.
“Investment is key which is why our commitment to improving our High Streets is ongoing and also why we have set aside this additional funding.”
“There is no doubt that traditional retail outlets have been hit very hard by the rise of online shopping so finding ways to support and regenerate our High Streets requires quite a bit of creative thinking.
“We are doing everything we can to help High Street businesses adapt to the modern world and offer something that keeps them viable.
“Investment is key to this and that is why we have set aside £500,000 in each of the next two years to help create new High Street experiences for the customer.”
The additional funding will build on existing Pride in Our High Streets schemes and funding in the borough since 2015.