OVER 100 businesses have expressed their interest in a transformational £1 million scheme, launched by Copeland Mayor, Mike Starkie.
Local pubs, clubs, restaurants, shops, hairdressers and takeaways are amongst those who have enquired about the scheme which offers grants of up to £5k for commercial premises improvements.
Within the first three weeks of the scheme opening the Council has sent out 101 application packs, after receiving 40 enquires from businesses in Whitehaven, 31 from Millom, seven from Cleator Moor, eight from Egremont and 15 from villages in Copeland.
Mr Starkie said: “The response to the Town Centre Regeneration Scheme from the business community in Copeland has been overwhelmingly positive.
“Business owners are delighted that they have the opportunity to make much-needed improvements to their premises at a fraction of the cost, with the support of their local council.
“The cash injection not only helps the business directly, but supports the tradespeople who are carrying out the work.
Residents and visitors will begin to see the vast improvement this scheme will make to our local towns and villages in the very near future.”
Copeland Borough Council 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.
The Copeland Pride of Place Town Centre Regeneration Scheme encourages business owners to enhance the external appearance of town centre shops and buildings.
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 public realm improvements.
Grants awarded to commercial premises must maximise visual impact which focuses on external works to the ground floor trading elevation.