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UK Shared Prosperity Fund Director visits Fleetwood to see progress of projects across Wyre

Wyre Council’s UK Shared Prosperity Fund (UKSPF) team secured the very first English district visit from the Government UKSPF Director in November.

This was a fantastic opportunity to showcase the ongoing plans and projects made possible through Wyre Council’s UKSPF funding as well as enabling discussions about the aspirations for the future for the borough.

In December 2022 Wyre Council secured £3.9 million as part of the Levelling Up agenda for UKSPF projects. In order to secure the funding, Wyre Council submitted an investment plan proposal to government outlining projects that the funding would be used for. The plan and the priorities it identified were written in consultation with Wyre’s Town Centre Partnership boards and organisations who can deliver Lancashire-wide initiatives.

There are a variety of projects currently progressing across the borough, from local creative and cultural activities like events, festivals and arts programmes, through to larger scale projects that support businesses, existing town centre CCTV upgrade, the development of community facilities and improvements to green spaces and public realm, as well as a multitude of other exciting projects in between for heritage, climate change, community and voluntary group development and more.

Senior officers from the council facilitated the visit and attendees from Fleetwood Museum and Chair of the Future Fleetwood Partnership Board and Headteacher at Flakefleet Primary School Dave McPartlin joined the teams on their trip, providing further insight into ongoing projects and future aspirations for the town and wider borough.

The teams visited Market House Studios and Fleetwood Market to see the ongoing futureproofing works, funded in part by UKSPF, which includes reinstating the historic features of the nineteenth century Market Hall, improvements to its appearance and working environment, supporting Wyre Council’s aspirations to improve the townscape along with the heritage and cultural offer in the town centre. Photovoltaic panels, LED lighting, removal of fossil fuel gas heating will help achieve significant energy and cost savings, helping the council on their commitment to achieving their net zero targets. The team also stopped by Fleetwood Museum to meet with the Museum Trust team and learn more about their ongoing and future Heritage projects plans and ended their trip at Marine Hall in Fleetwood.

Carmen Suarez Garcia, Director for Levelling Up: Major Programmes commented;

‘The visit to Fleetwood has provided a great opportunity to gain a better ‘on the ground’ understanding of the impact of funding on specific projects, their progress and relevance, as well as of the aspirations and future potential plans for the area.’

Carmen was joined by other Levelling Up officers including Adam Lynch-Brown, UKSPF Senior Delivery Officer, Caitlyn Harrison, UKSPF Policy Advisor and Paul Evans, Assistant Director, Lancashire/North West, Cities and Growth Unit: Government’s Local Growth Team.

Councillor Peter Le Marinel, Planning Policy and Economic Development Portfolio Holder at Wyre Council commented;

“We were extremely pleased to gain the first visit from the central Government’s UKSPF team and to take advantage of the opportunity to showcase our plans for our UKSPF projects over the next two years. It was a really rewarding trip and we would like to thank all of the attendees for their enthusiasm and commitment to making it a success.”

Read more about Wyre Council’s UKSPF projects online at www.wyre.gov.uk/UKSPF

Published: 21st December 2023