|A report to South Holland District Council’s Cabinet later this month will lay out an exciting three-year plan of improvements for Holbeach and Spalding town centres, providing future opportunities for residents, businesses and visitors in the towns.
The £500,000 development plan, funded from the Council’s growth and investment reserve, outlines a series of proposed improvements for the towns, including:
• Refurbishment and modernisation of town centre toilet facilities
• Free Wi-Fi provision along the high streets
• Installation of new street furniture including benches, bollards, planters and bins
• A programme of events including activities shows, specialist markets and celebrations
• Review and reshape the existing markets provision
• Creation of a heritage/arts trail featuring key heritage sites, buildings and rivers.
The Council’s plan, which is due to go to the meeting of full council in November, is part of its effort to recognise the importance of the District’s towns as community hubs for its residents, and to offer an all-encompassing destination for retail, leisure and social interactions that people want to live in, work in and visit.
A Town Centre Steering Group would also be established to feed into the shaping and developing of the plan. The groups will consist of local community and business representatives to give a wide range of experiences and views from the town, and to help inform elements of the project as they develop.
These planned improvements are the 2nd piece of positive news for Holbeach in the last few months, after the Council successfully submitted an expression of interest to the nationwide Future High Streets Fund for the town in August this year. £150,000 was awarded for the Council to develop a detailed business case about improvements to the high street, which would be submitted in June 2020 and could ultimately secure capital funding in the region of £5-10 million for the town, with the outcome likely to be announced by the Government in Autumn 2020.
Also going to the Council’s Cabinet later in the month will be a proposal for how the South Holland Community Reserve will be used. The £500,000 fund, announced as part of the 2019-20 budget, will act as a loan fund for Parish Councils across the district to help support the building, buying or improving of community assets, through both capital works and projects.
Cllr Nick Worth, South Holland District Council deputy leader and portfolio holder for growth and commercialisation, said: “This plan lays out a really positive and exciting series of improvements for Spalding and Holbeach, which will play a crucial part in cementing their position as the primary destinations for retail, entertainment, markets and events in the District.
As a Council we are in the perfect position, through our links with the local community, businesses and other organisations, to take the lead on establishing this plan and showing our continued commitment to improving our town centres.
Whilst the current plan is just a starting point, it offers a clear direction with significant benefits to both towns, recognising and highlighting their unique identities and bringing new customers, visitors, businesses and investment into them and securing their long-term future.”