The £830 million Future High Streets Fund (FHSF) is part of the Government’s overall £3.6 billion Towns Fund and aims to renew and reshape town centres and high streets in a way that drives growth, improves experience and ensures future sustainability. Grantham was awarded £5.56 million of FHSF to deliver infrastructure investment projects in the town, supplemented with an additional contribution of £379K from South Kesteven District Council (SKDC) to develop town centre leadership and promotional activities over the programme period which runs until 31/3/24.
PROJECT 1 – PUBLIC REALM – STATION APPROACH
This project aims to improve pedestrian and cycling connectivity between the railway station and the town centre. This will create a more welcoming key gateway to the town encouraging the 1.4 million (pre-Pandemic) annual travellers using the railway station to visit the town centre. The existing footway on Station Road will be widened to enhance the pedestrian experience supplemented by work which aims to create space for cyclists. Significant improvements will also be made to the 5-arm junction creating a defined pedestrian/cycling route across the A52 toward Westgate and the town centre.
PROJECT 2 – PUBLIC REALM – MARKET PLACE.
This project will raise the current road height of the Market Place to deliver a single level structured, cohesive space capable of delivering a regular programme of town centre events. When not in use the Market Place will function as a central urban open space for the town and resume its historic function as a market place. With this improvement the Market Place will be re-established as the heart of the town, a gathering point for residents and visitors.
PROJECT 3 – STRATEGIC SITE ACQUISITION.
It has been a long-standing ambition to regenerate the historic industrial area between Wharf Road and the railway station. The area has the potential to deliver a mixed-use scheme comprising commercial, leisure and residential uses thereby improving the quality of the built environment in the area and enhancing the gateway link between the town centre and railway station. The FHSF provides funding to acquire a strategic site for redevelopment as a first phase of what is envisaged will be a wider area of regeneration.
PROJECT 4 – UPPER FLOOR GRANT PROGRAMME
This project will support the conversion of underutilised upper floor retail in the principal retail areas of the town to create high quality accommodation. The Grants Programme aims to establish a model for the delivery of high-quality town centre living in Grantham that maximises energy efficiency and preserves the historic fabric of buildings. The grant will not fund the creation of bedsits and the new accommodation should provide space that accords with Department for Levelling Up Housing and Communities Technical Space Standards. The grant will fund 50% of the conversion costs up to a maximum of £25,000 per unit created.
The principal retail areas would include properties situated on:
The Grants Guidance document and Expression of Interest Form can be found by clicking the links below.
PROJECT 5 – TOWN TEAM
The final project is to develop a Town Team formed from a wide-ranging group of Grantham stakeholders including business, community, political and resident representatives.
The group will help develop promotional activities and events as well as being a sounding board for ideas and concepts which will help shape policy and plans for the future of Grantham.
The group will be supported by a Town Centre Engagement Manager for the duration of the programme period.