After almost a year of in-depth work, the Goole Town Deal Board have submitted their proposals to regenerate Goole town centre to the Government in a bid to secure funding of up to £25million.
The outcome of the Government’s decision, which is expected to be known by spring, will determine how much funding from the initial offer in November 2019 will be secured. Goole is one of the 101 towns invited to develop proposals for the Government’s £3.6billion Towns Fund.
It is hoped that the proposed package will improve the attractiveness and functioning of Goole town centre, during a period leading up to the 2026 bicentenary. The proposals seek to ensure local people and businesses, with their supply chains, can take full advantage of future investments and make it a place for people to want to live, work, invest and spend time in.
Projects included within the proposals are:
- physical regeneration of both property and the urban environment within the town centre
- the use of ‘anchor’ destinations in the town centre for leisure and enterprise opportunities
- improvement of physical connectivity through an enhanced rail connection and digitally through gigabit broadband.
Joseph Richardson, chair of the Goole Town Deal Board, said: “There is no doubt that Goole is a town on the up.
“Having worked in the town for over 20 years, I have never known such an exciting time, with major private sector investments already happening, and high-skilled jobs on the way.
“It is now imperative that we harness this amazing potential with complimentary investment in the town centre, which faces many challenges such as market failure on the high street and underutilised buildings.
“We want to give residents a town that they are proud of – and that is the driving force behind this Town Deal which we are fully committed to delivering.”
East Riding of Yorkshire Council will oversee funding distribution in its role as the accountable body for the Goole Town Deal Board. Its leader, Councillor Richard Burton, said: “Like many towns, Goole has suffered from structural economic change, along with changes to the traditional functioning of its town centre.
“However, through this potentially transformative plan, I am optimistic that new uses, new facilities and services, and a better environment, can fully reinvigorate the town centre.”
Goole’s Victorian Market Hall, which is of local historic significance but currently remains vacant, has recently received accelerated Town Deal Funding for repairs and maintenance. Future proposals for the much-loved building include creating event space for community-led pop-ups, enterprises and festivals.
Proposals are also in place to establish a high visibility hub on the high street, which would serve as a focal point to connect people, businesses and opportunities, reaping the benefits of Goole 36 and the potential Freeport status in Goole.
With the aim of promoting Goole’s wider regional significance, the proposals include a direct rail link connecting the residents and businesses in Goole with the wider region, connecting to the west and vice-versa to other economic centres such as Leeds and Manchester. This would drive economic growth in the town and across the region.
Andrew Percy MP said: “Unfortunately, Goole continues to still have areas of significant deprivation and, in many ways, it is a perfect example of the sort of community the Government’s levelling-up agenda is aimed at.
“Our town centre has faced significant challenges in recent years, and there is much more to do to ensure that local residents have the skills required to take advantage of the new jobs coming to our town.
“Private sector investment will certainly help address these challenges, but our full potential will only be reached with significant public sector investment, such as the Town Deal.
“Local residents are clear about what they want for Goole’s future, and the projects within this Town Deal bid reflect those priorities and the needs of the town.”
Once the outcome is announced in the spring, each proposal will then progress to a full business case which will be subject to wider local community and business engagement.
To view the proposals in more detail, please visit www.gooletowndeal.co.uk