Multi-million investment to transform local high streets across the borough

Cabinet will be asked to approve plans to invest more than £30m in our local high streets and other local priority projects over the next five years at their meeting on Wednesday 23 March.

Our Principal Towns and local village centres investment work is all about making sure you have local access to shops, markets, restaurants, and a diverse night-time economy so you can enjoy your leisure time in your communities.

Our Principal Towns programme has already demonstrated its innovative and trailblazing approach to thriving communities with £5 million already invested into our six Principal Towns and ten Local Centres to help them thrive.

This has already given us more than 60 projects either completed or underway. These include more than 500 local shop-front transformations, as well as community art projects and new public spaces created. 

Now Cabinet is asked to approve the next, much larger, stage of the Principal Towns and Local Village Centres Investment Programme. Members will be asked to approve new Town Investment Plans for each of our Principal Towns of Cudworth, Hoyland, Royston, Penistone and Wombwell. Goldthorpe already has a Town Investment Plan after it was chosen as one of the towns to be supported by the UK Government’s Towns Fund.

The plans have been put together using feedback from local people through local consultations.

Each plan is different and tailored to local priorities in each area, but include investment in areas including:

  • New mini business centres including business support
  • Repurposing of key buildings and land
  • Transport improvements including active travel routes
  • Cultural celebrations, as well as participation in cultural events and projects
  • Employability support to help people to get into good work
  • Development of open and welcoming public and green spaces
  • Development of amenities and facilities for community use
  • Digital connectivity projects to tackle digital exclusion and build skills
  • Investment in low carbon and sustainability improvements

A few examples of proposals in the plan include a new urban community square created by repurposing run-down buildings in Cudworth; Further redevelopment of Hoyland Town Centre; a potential new efficient and eco-friendly building in Penistone to bring together public sector uses; Development of Monckton Enterprise Park and The Grove at Royston to create jobs and new business space; and Redesign of the Burton Building on Wombwell High Street for potential additional retail space and business start-up hub.

A separate local investment plan has been developed to cover all other areas outside of the Principal Towns. This looks at key priority projects in our local centres at ward level to further enhance the local economy and sustainability.

If approved, the plans will be used to help stimulate private sector investment in our borough as an important element of our wider Place-based Investment Plan for Barnsley.

Cllr Tim Cheetham, Cabinet Spokesperson for Regeneration and Culture, said: “We’ve created our own Levelling Up Plan for Barnsley which is rightly ambitious and cuts right across the whole borough. It makes sure Barnsley continues to grow and develop as a fantastic place to live, work and invest.

“We’ve already allocated £10m in the budget for the coming financial year to support our Principal Towns and Local Centres programme. We’ll now be using these detailed Town Investment Plans to support investment through regional and national funding opportunities, and bring in other inward investment.

“It's time to believe in the possibilities of Barnsley, to look to the future with excitement and optimism. Our borough is a place that fosters and grows ambition, enabling everyone to be the best they can be in every corner of our borough.”

The Principal Towns programme achieved national recognition as a finalist in the Local Government Chronicle (LGC) Awards.

You can read the full Cabinet report here.

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