A TRANSFORMATIONAL £1 million scheme has been launched to revitalise Copeland and applications open on Monday.
Councillors, media and members of the business community gathered at The Beacon Portal, Whitehaven today (Thursday) to hear details of the scheme that will see the huge cash injection into the borough.
Mike Starkie, Mayor of Copeland, has pledged £500k to regenerate shopfronts in Copeland’s towns and villages, alongside street improvements, which will attract a further £500k from the private sector.
Mr Starkie said: “This project has the potential to be transformational for Copeland. We all have enormous pride in our borough, and this funding will help us and the community continue to create a place where people are proud to live, work and visit. This Council is delighted to be at the forefront of helping to make this happen.
“We have a wealth of fantastic and innovative small businesses in the area – some with family histories going back generations - and it is vitally important that we support those who wish to improve the appearance of their premises, their contribution to their communities and to reach their full commercial potential.
“Our towns are steeped in rich architectural heritage and, while costly to maintain, we must ensure that we’re doing all we can to enhance the unique character of the borough’s built environment for everyone to enjoy and to have pride in our place.”
The Copeland Pride of Place Town Centre Regeneration Scheme encourages business owners to enhance the external appearance of town centre shops and buildings as well as improving the borough’s built environment and street scene.
Grants are available for up to 50 per cent of the value of the work required, up to a maximum amount of £5,000, to improve the external appearance of commercial property, principally the ground floor trading elevation.
This 50 per cent contribution means that local businesses will be required to invest in their premises to match-fund the grant.
The scheme is open to owners, landlords and tenants of units that are located within Copeland’s towns and villages, with priority given to the four main town centres of Whitehaven, Cleator Moor, Egremont and Millom.
£375k of the fund has been allocated to improving the town centres. £75k has been allocated to villages in Copeland and £50k for street improvements.
Grants awarded to commercial premises must maximise visual impact focusing on improvements to windows and window frames, doorways, external decoration and signage.
Applications will be open from Monday, July 24. For more information contact the Council’s Economic Development Department by email at firstname.lastname@example.org or by calling 01946 598433.