Northampton stakes its claim for £25million boost to eight areas of the town centre

What could a 25million fund do for Northampton town centre?
What could a 25million fund do for Northampton town centre?

Northampton has made its bid for a slice of a £620million fund to revamp the high street.

Up to £25million could be on the table to improve the market square, renovate Gold Street and rethink the eastern section of Abington Street - if the borough council can secure it.

Some of the members of the Northampton Forward group which aims to transform Northampton town centre.

Some of the members of the Northampton Forward group which aims to transform Northampton town centre.

However, the borough council has not published what specifically is in their plan, and instead say they will preview it at a exhibition on April 15 in the Grosvenor's Centre.

The bid has been put forward by 'Northampton Forward', which is made up of leaders from the borough council, the Grosvenor's Centre, Tricker's Shoes, the University of Northampton and more.

Northampton Borough Council Leader and Chair of Northampton Forward councillor Jonathan Nunn, said: "This project will showcase our town as a place that is ambitious and proud and needs support through significant change in the physical environment to realise its full potential.

“The sheer breadth of support for this project is staggering. Our fully inclusive approach will ensure that we continue to deliver in line with our bold aspirations."

Reportedly, planning firm 5plus Architects played a hand in drafting the plan for Northampton.

The bid should set out the challenges Northampton is facing and a vision for how they could be tackled, which the Government would use to make an initial assessment. Those selected will then need to develop full applications in the summer.

If successful, the town could pick up the funding in April 2020. Areas of focus include Market Square, Greyfriars, Abington Street, Marefair, Gold Street, Fish Street, Dychurch Lane, and the route from the railway station into town.

The £620million 'Future High Streets' fund comes in response to national decline in town centre fortunes, largely caused by changing shopping habits.

Martin Mason, Managing Director of Tricker’s shoes in Northampton, said: “Northampton has a history in luxury shoemaking rightly recognised as the very best in the world.

“Tricker’s holds a unique position as the oldest footwear manufacturer in the town. This bold and ambitious plan will regenerate interest in the town and secure a prosperous future for all current and future businesses.”