Wednesday, June 30, 2021

News: North / South combine in Levelling Up Fund bid


The towns of Wath in the north of Rotherham, and Dinnington, in the south, are at the heart of a bid to secure £20m from the Government's Levelling Up Fund.

Rotherham Council has submitted three bids to the Government's £4 billion competitive fund that will invest in infrastructure that improves everyday life across the UK.

Wath and Dinnington have been designated as areas of growth in terms of new housing and employment and the bid seeks to support and develop these towns and ensure the local community benefits from this growth.

A short masterplanning and design exercise was undertaken in consultation with local stakeholders and Ward Members. From this a first phase of projects has been developed and proposed to Government.

In Wath, the council aims to secure £10.7m to carry out interventions that have a total cost of £12.9m.

The authority said that Wath Library’s age and condition creates an improvement opportunity for a major new focal point and attractor, if re-oriented and set within an attractive space. If the bid is successful, the library will be demolished and replaced with a modern and attractive library with a community hub.

The opportunity to make better use of the car parking also enables full redevelopment of the area surrounding the library and community hub to bring in high-quality public realm and event space. New retail and residential units will then connect the library block to the town centre.

In Dinnington the council aims to secure £9.2m to carry out interventions that have a total cost of £14m.

Rother Valley MP Alexander Stafford has campaigned for the bid to focus on Dinnington High Street, notably the outdoor market indoor market and further retail premises nearby that are not fit for purpose, some without running water and toilet facilities and some which have been burnt out and derelict for several years.

If the bid is successful, the area will be transformed to create new residential and retail with space for an indoor market. The outdoor market will be upgraded and sited within event space and upgraded public realm.

The Council said that it will seek to engage with the private sector to deliver the new retail and residential in both towns.

Alexander Stafford said: "I welcome that RMBC have pulled together a bid for Rother Valley and that our communities have a fair chance of winning their slice of this funding.

“Having lobbied very hard for our high streets and having been a strong advocate for using this money to rejuvenate them, I am pleased that they will form a central part of our bid here in Rother Valley and I look forward to hearing the outcome."

Images: Google Maps


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