East Midlands lands over £40m of Levelling Up cash – but Broad Marsh misses out again

How Bulwell could look

The East Midlands has received over £40m in Levelling up cash from the Government – but the dormant Broad Marsh centre in Nottingham city centre has missed out for a third time.

The Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities has awarded the money to three areas: Newark and Sherwood; Nottingham and South Derbyshire.

In Newark and Sherwood almost £20m will be used in Ollerton and Clipstone. Newark and Sherwood District Council has two projects that it hopes can be funded by the investment.

The first is the Ollerton Town Centre Hub which is a joint venture between Newark and Sherwood District Council, Ollerton and Boughton Town Council, Nottinghamshire County Council, and the owners of the existing Forest Centre in the town. It will see a new public sector hub with services of the Town and District Council’s complemented by a brand-new state-of-the-art library, boutique cinema, and new commercial units.

The second project could support a new sustainable industrial estate in Clipstone alongside some wider sports and education facilities.

Councillor Paul Peacock, leader of Newark and Sherwood District Council, said: “This announcement is long-overdue, but it is well deserved and needed, especially for Ollerton. Our regeneration team have been working hard at shaping ideas to where they currently are and without our ‘ready-to-deliver’ projects, the much-needed investment may not have been so forthcoming.

“This investment is great, but it really needs to be supported by yet further investment, in road infrastructure for example, and I hope that the Government will continue investing further in Ollerton and Clipstone.”

Nottingham City Council has been given just under £20m to revitalise Bulwell town centre. Alex Norris MP said: “I am delighted to announce that our bid into the Levelling Up Fund has been successful.

“Through this we will bring nearly £20m to our community revitalising the local town centre and creating jobs.”

Meanwhile, some £1.1m will be spent on improving Swadlincote town centre.

The leader of Nottingham City Council said he was “disappointed” with the decision not to award funds to the huge Broad Marsh redevelopment plan.

Councillor David Mellen said: “Nottingham had bid for a total of £57 million for Bulwell, Broad Marsh and the Island Quarter from round two of the Levelling Fund last year but didn’t receive a penny so we’re pleased that it’s finally been announced today that Bulwell will receive funding. Bulwell town centre is an important part of the city which serves several communities, and we welcome this much needed investment.

“However, it’s a big disappointment that the site of the former Broad Marsh shopping centre has once again been left out. It’s one of the most significant city centre development sites anywhere in the UK which would bring major benefits to local people including up to 1,000 new homes and more than 6,000 jobs. Much progress has already been on made on transforming the area with the new Central Library opening next week alongside the new car park and bus station, the Nottingham College city hub, improvements to the surrounding public spaces and work on the Green Heart city centre park due to start soon.

“Funding from Levelling Up Fund would have helped develop the wider Master Plan for the area. This work will continue including how best to secure support from the public and private sector.

“Our original bid for Bulwell involved improvements to key amenities and links to transport services including enhancing green space and public realm alongside the River Leen; improvements to the market place and better connectivity between Bulwell Bogs, the tram stop, bus station, market place and high streets.

“We need to review the detail of the Government’s announcement and re-test that the original plans are still deliverable against the new timeline and factor in the impact of inflation since the initial bid was submitted nearly a year and a half ago.”

Levelling up Secretary Michael Gove said: “Levelling up means delivering local people’s priorities and bringing transformational change in communities that have, for too long, been overlooked and undervalued.

“We are backing 55 projects across the UK with £1 billion to create new jobs and opportunities, power economic growth, and revitalise local areas.

“This funding sits alongside our wider initiatives to spread growth, through devolving more money and power out of Westminster to towns and cities, putting in place bespoke interventions to places that need it most, and our Long-Term Plan for Towns.”

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