News Date: Friday 27th July 2012
MP pledges to become Town Team Partner
The UK government has pledged that towns not selected to be Portas Pilots will not be left behind, following news that 15 UK towns have been chosen to take part in the second wave of the scheme.
Nearly 400 Town Teams will win backing from a multi-million pound package of Government support to revive their high streets and make them the beating hearts of their communities, Local Government Minister Grant Shapps announced today.
Having received an overwhelming volume of high quality bids, Mr Shapps confirmed that those not selected to be Portas Pilots would not be left behind.
He issued a call to MPs from the 392 Town Teams not chosen, to come forward and sign a national pledge to become a Town Team Partner - enabling access to a package of support to their own town which is worth £5.5million nationwide.
On announcing the plans the Minister said:
‘I’d like to congratulate the 15 town teams that, in the face of stiff competition, have been selected to be the next Portas Pilots. However, this is just the tip of the iceberg, and I’m determined that we don’t turn our backs on the other 392 Town Teams who put their plans forward to revive their high streets.
That’s why I’m calling on these communities, led by their MPs, to put themselves forward once again to become Town Team Partners.’
Each team that applies will benefit from a package of support to refine their plans and get the help and advice they need to bring their town centres back to life.
The government has said that it is to share funding of £5.5 million between the 27 successful towns and the 392 other town teams, while the 15 latest towns will share a package worth £1.5 million.
Tim Loughton will be one of the MPs signing the pledge in September to become a Town Team Partner as Lancing, a village in his constituency of East Worthing and Shoreham, originally applied to become a Portas Pilot but was unsuccessful. Lancing has recently devised regeneration plans for their village and they eager to put them into action.
‘I am delighted that the Government has decided to introduce this additional support which shows their commitment to help local communities develop. The plans that Lancing and Adur Councils and BDP consultants have produced to regenerate Lancing will greatly benefit the community and they will hopefully be able to get one step closer by taking advantage of the support on offer.