How Levelling Up funding will improve Guisborough Town Centre

FUNDING which will transform Guisborough Town Centre was today welcomed by Redcar and Cleveland Borough Council.

Just under £20million will be invested for key projects in the Middlesbrough South and East Cleveland constituency following a successful bid for the Government’s Levelling Up Fund. This was pulled together jointly by Redcar & Cleveland Borough Council and Middlesbrough Council.

The Levelling Up Fund is a £4.8bn pot to fund capital investment and local infrastructure projects across the UK. Local councils from different constituencies pulled together their bids to apply for funding which was then endorsed by their Member of Parliament. The final decision was then taken by Government on which were granted money.

A total of £15million will now go towards the regeneration of Guisborough town centre. This includes:

  • improvement works on Westgate, Bakehouse Square and Chaloner Street by realigning car parking areas, providing outdoor retail space, street furniture, signage, trees and CCTV;
  • environmental improvements to Chapel Beck to increase active usage of and create an attractive recreation space for visitors; 
  • landscaping improvement works to the King George V Playing Field replacing recreation apparatus to promote natural play and deliver a new skate park;
  • introducing a Town Centre Commercial Grant Scheme – to attract and assist private businesses with shopfront and commercial property improvement works to enhance Guisborough’s appearance;
  • providing a new sustainable active travel route (cycling and walking) from Guisborough to Nunthorpe, via the Guisborough Forest and Woodland Walkway Visitor Centre. This route is off road in the rural central section with connections to existing and proposed cycle routes for onward travel to East Cleveland, central Teesside and North Yorkshire including the North York Moors National Park;
  • making improvements to Guisborough Forest and Walkway Visitor Centre including sustainability enhancements and improved access/parking arrangements. 

A total of £4.812m will go towards the Newham Grange highway scheme (B1365) to help unlock the site for additional housing in Middlesbrough. This includes:

  • funding the delivery of circa 800 houses on the Middlesbrough Council-owned site at Coulby Newham to the south of Middlesbrough Town Centre.

A total of £0.175m will help develop a business case to deliver a transport hub at Guisborough/Nunthorpe focusing on rail and sustainable transport.

A second bid submitted by Redcar & Cleveland Borough Council, which was made on behalf of Redcar’s constituency and would have transformed Eston, was unfortunately unsuccessful.

Cllr Mary Lanigan, Leader of Redcar & Cleveland Borough Council, said: “We are so pleased that Guisborough will receive this investment; the town and its residents absolutely deserve it.  Our focus when submitting this bid was to ensure economic growth and recovery, making the most of the Teesworks site and what employment opportunities this will bring to our residents. The money will also enhance tourism and improve accessibility to North York Moors National Park.

“This investment will help complement and build upon the regeneration and development already taking place in East Cleveland and Redcar, and we are determined to increase the prosperity of our residents which is what we promised we would strive to achieve.

“We are, of course, extremely disappointed that our Redcar bid was unsuccessful, meaning Eston Square and the swimming pool will not receive this round’s Levelling Up funding. We will explore how we can potentially strengthen our bid and resubmit this for Government to reconsider, but we hear loud and clear our residents’ disappointment and we will keep fighting for the area.”

Cllr Chris Gallacher, Cabinet Member for Economic Development at the Council, said: “I would like to congratulate the team, from our Council and Middlesbrough, for pulling together such a strong bid. This investment will help us take forward some vital projects for Guisborough whilst helping us seize the opportunity presented by Teesworks.

“The Council will get to work immediately on delivering these projects for our residents who will see a big difference to Guisborough town centre.”