Chancellor announces details of 105 areas across the UK to receive a share of the Levelling Up Fund

The government has allocated the first tranche of funding, worth £1.7bn, for projects from its £4.8bn Levelling Up Fund.

The Chancellor revealed in his Budget speech yesterday that the first round of the Fund has been earmarked for 105 areas across the UK. 

The full list of successful bids can be viewed on the Excel spreadsheet at this link to GOV.UK.

The Levelling Up Fund invited bids from local authorities across the UK for local infrastructure improvements, such as regenerating town centres and high streets, local transport upgrades, and investment in culture and heritage.

The biggest single grant, worth £49.6m, has been awarded to Derbyshire County Council for the South Derby growth zone and infinity garden village.

This project, which straddles South Derbyshire DC and Derby City Council, aims to deliver 4,750 new homes and 5,000 new jobs. The area has also been denoted by the government as an enterprise zone and the site of one of 14 garden villages to be built across England.

The second biggest sum from the fund’s first round will go to the Council of the Isles of Scilly, which has netted £48m to help replace the vessels and improve the harbours that the islands rely on for their sea links with the English mainland.

The third largest grant – and the biggest outside England – was awarded to Renfrewshire Council, which received £38.7m for its AMIDS South (travel links improvement project), according to a breakdown of winning bidders by the Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities.

And the next biggest award was £37m to the Liverpool City Region for transport infrastructure improvements.

A total of £172m has been allocated to Scotland in the first round, including for the redevelopment of Inverness Castle, the renovation of the Westfield roundabout in Falkirk, and a new marketplace in Aberdeen city centre.

More projects won funding through the levelling up fund in the north-west (12) than in any other region.

The government has also announced £5.3m for the first 21 projects to benefit from the £150m Community Ownership Fund, which is designed to help protect and manage important local assets.

Responding to the news of his authority’s successful levelling up fund bid, Council of the Isles of Scilly chairman Robert Francis said:

“The council has made it a priority to ensure that the existing ageing ships and infrastructure are replaced, and we have been fortunate at the timing of the levelling up fund opportunity. It is no exaggeration to say that the ships that link the Isles of Scilly to the mainland are a lifeline for this community and today marks an important day in Scilly’s recent history.

“We are extremely grateful to the government for recognising the need for investment through their support during the pandemic and now again through this substantial funding of £48m.”

For more details about the Levelling Up Fund and its prospectus, visit the GOV.UK website.

Further information about the Community Ownership Fund and its prospectus is also available on GOV.UK.

A list of the 21 projects funded through Round 1 of the Community Ownership Fund is now available on the Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities website.

Image: the Isles of Scilly.
Source: Local Government Chronicle.