Rachel Maclean MP and Cllr Matt Dormer have hailed the awarding of £15.6 million from the Towns Fund as an historic moment for Redditch.
Today (June 8th), the Government has announced Redditch has been awarded this landmark Town Deal funding.
This funding represents one of the single largest Government investments in Redditch since it became a new town in the 1960s.
It comes on top of the £1 million advance Redditch was awarded last year from the Towns Fund in order to accelerate investment in the town.
In September 2019, Redditch was revealed as one of 101 towns across the country invited to develop proposals for a new generation of multi-million-pound Town Deals as a result of Rachel’s lobbying efforts.
Since then, and despite the pandemic, a local Town Deal Board, which is a group made up of local businesspeople, community leaders, Cllr Dormer and the town’s MP, worked hard to develop Redditch’s Town Investment Plan.
The plan was then submitted to Government back in January after receiving cross-party support at Redditch Borough Council and bolstered with the backing of Worcestershire County Council whose Cabinet declared the train station to be a ‘gamechanger’ site.
The ambitious proposals, which have now secured the backing of £15.6 million of Government investment, will be used to invest in skills, digital manufacturing, green infrastructure and town centre regeneration in accordance with the Town Investment Plan.
The ambitious projects included in the Town Deal are:
- The creation of a Digital Manufacturing and Innovation Centre.
- Town Centre regeneration by upgrading Church Green, Evesham Walk and Unicorn Hill, as well as improving walking and cycling infrastructure.
- The creation of a modern new public square, which will improve the flow between the Kingfisher Shopping Centre and the rest of the town centre, and could lead to the creation of new units for cafes, restaurants and bars.
- Relocation and modernisation of Redditch Library to create a cutting-edge offer fit for the 21st century.
- The development of a Transport Interchange and Railway Quarter to significantly upgrade and regenerate Redditch’s Railway Station.
In a survey conducted by Redditch Conservatives in February following the submission of the Town Investment Plan, support for the redevelopment of the current library site attracted 66% support (8.3% were indifferent to the proposals) and only 25.7% of respondents were opposed to the vision. The plans will see Redditch retain its library provision with the library being relocated to the Town Hall.
In welcoming the Town Deal funding, Rachel said:
“Our agenda to Unlock Redditch is now benefiting from real investment from central government, which means we will press ahead with the delivery of tangible change for the people of Redditch.
“I believe this funding really will be game-changing for our town. We will make Redditch a town fit for the 21st Century by investing in skills, tackling climate change and making Redditch a great place to live, work and raise a family.”
Cllr Matt Dormer, Leader of Redditch Borough Council, added:
“This really is an historic investment for Redditch and could well be the single largest Government investment our town has seen since it became a new town.
“Local Conservatives have always demanded better for our town – and that’s exactly what we will be able to deliver thanks to this funding.
“Now it’s time to get on and deliver our ambitious plans to unlock Redditch’s full potential. The public support is there – confirmed by the surveys we’ve done, and the amazing results at the elections last month – and now the money is starting to arrive so we can push ahead.”