Borough council secures £1.3m for local investment after agreeing UKSPF Investment Plan with Government
Published: Wednesday, 11 January 2023
Businesses and communities in Oadby & Wigston are to benefit from £1.3million of new funding secured by the borough council over the next 27 months from the UK Shared Prosperity Fund.
Oadby & Wigston Borough Council’s (OWBC) successful Investment Plan to the Government is a major boost for the area and will allow for a period of significant investment over the coming two years.
The fund will be administered by the council but will be supported by two Local Partnership Groups bringing together key organisations from across the borough to help shape the exact nature of the programmes that must now be delivered to spend the money.
The successful investment plan responded to three key themes where the council would look to invest:
- Community and Place – building pride in the community, restoring a sense of community and belonging and regenerating town centres.
- Supporting Local Business – increasing pay, productivity and employment chances.
- People and Skills – supporting high quality skills and training.
Specific investment ideas around those themes included landscaping and visual improvements to the three town centres in the borough, shop front improvement schemes, enhanced business support, town centre events to increase footfall, support for start-up businesses and schemes to upskill local workers.
The Shop Front Improvement Grants are ready to roll out immediately and are now open for applications. Mirroring an existing scheme in South Wigston, the Improvement Grants are aimed at retailers and businesses located in the town centres. A maximum of £2,000 will be available, matched 50/50 with the business, to make improvements to the look of the shop fronts through new signage, decoration, or lighting amongst others; more information is available in the guidance document found at www.investow.co.uk/shop-front-improvement-scheme where an application form is also included.
Oadby & Wigston borough councillor Lee Bentley, who will chair the Local Partnership groups working on the UKSPF, said: “Opportunities to receive funding as significant as this are few and far between so this is huge for us and we’re delighted to have been successful.
“Now we have the money, we need to shape the specific schemes and projects that deliver what we set out in our investment plan bid.
“Local businesses and partners will play a huge role in helping us to develop projects and ensure we maximise the way we spend this money and we’re looking forward to getting them involved to hear their ideas.”
The £1.3m funding will not all be delivered at the same time, with some coming forward in future years as the funding is released and programmes are developed in collaboration with communities and businesses.
The council is also working with the Leicestershire authorities to collaborate on projects where we can so that there is a common service provided where possible.
To find more information and to keep up to date with progress in developing projects to spend the funding, visit www.investow.co.uk/ukspf-projects
Businesses, organisations or individuals interested in getting more involved in helping the council to develop local projects can express their interest by emailing UKSPF@oadby-wigston.gov.uk