Lancashire County Council has welcomed the announcement that nine local projects are to receive £3.4m from a government fund to support regeneration and economic growth.

The county council put forward the projects as part of a bid to the Community Renewal Fund which targets funding to help ‘level up’ areas hardest hit by Covid, and kickstart progress towards a net zero carbon economy.

The submission of Lancashire’s bid to government this summer followed a local bidding and appraisal process led by the county council in order to shortlist from a number of projects put forward for consideration by organisations within the county.

The successful schemes announced this week by the Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities include:

  • £261,849 for Decarbonising Rossendale – a project being led by Valley Heritage to reinvent a neglected former bank building on Bacup’s high street as a low-carbon community space. This will be an opportunity for the community to understand and learn what the low carbon future will look like, helping to kickstart local action towards net zero.
  • £100,000 for Digital Resilience Training for Businesses – a project being led by Lancashire County Council to provide a suite of online training tools aimed at upskilling businesses in understanding, procuring and using basic digital software tools.
  • £654,279 for Pennine Lancashire Linear Park Pilot – a cultural development programme being led by The Super Slow Way along the Leeds and Liverpool Canal corridor. A range of community-based activities and projects will help people to build confidence and skills while bringing new life to unused green spaces and derelict sites along the canal.
  • £700,000 for the Low Carbon Technology Business Support and Skills Academy – a project being led by the East Lancashire Chamber of Commerce to provide business support for firms developing new low carbon technologies and to help develop training for non-traditional construction roles which will boost progress towards net zero.

County Councillor Aidy Riggott, cabinet member for economic development and growth, said:

“It’s vital that we take every opportunity we can to increase investment in Lancashire and I’m very pleased that our successful bid to the Community Renewal Fund will bring in £3.4m for some extremely worthwhile projects.

“This funding will provide job opportunities for people in the low-carbon economy, support small business growth, and renew community activities, helping to speed the recovery of those places in Lancashire which have been most affected by the pandemic.

“I’m grateful to all the organisations which put forward these projects and worked with the county council’s Business Growth Service to ensure Lancashire’s success in this bidding process, and look forward to seeing them develop over the coming months.”

A full list of the projects to receive support from the Community Renewal Fund is published by the Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities at https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/uk-community-renewal-fund-successful-bids.

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