Home News ‘Levelling Up’ hope for Earlestown

‘Levelling Up’ hope for Earlestown

by Gemma Melling

Plans to transform Market Square in Earlestown could be boosted if a bid to the Government’s Levelling Up fund is successful.

St Helens Council has submitted two bids to the fund – with one centred around the transformation of Earlestown Town Centre as part of ongoing regeneration in the area.

They hope to turn Market Square into a thriving retail and event space, and released more images showing how it could look as part of their bid.

A second bid was also submitted for St Helens, based around the restoration of The Gamble building.

Together, the bids seeking funding of up to £40million, and the council has reveived backing from MPs Conor McGinn and Marie Rimmer.

Conor McGinn MP said: “Our ambitious Levelling Up Fund bid, which I’m proud to fully back, is the latest bold step we are taking locally to transform our town centres in Earlestown and St Helens, and deliver exciting regeneration for our people, by our people.

“It’s no secret that we want St Helens Borough to be the best place in which to live, work and visit in our whole region. By properly revitalising our historic places and cherished public spaces, we are pushing on to that goal at great speed.”

Marie Rimmer MP said: “These bids form part of our overall plan to help make our town even better. I am glad to be backing them as they will make a real difference to local residents.

What could Levelling Up funding mean to Earlestown?

The £20million bid will focus on three key projects in Earlestown town centre, building on the vision outlined in the Earlestown Masterplan Development Framework. This will include the revitalisation of Market Square, provision of a new market canopy and enhanced public realm. The plans will bring back vitality to the historic market town, attract activity into the heart of the town centre and increase its usage outside of the current market day programme.

Funding would also help to support the restoration of Earlestown Town Hall and bring the much-loved Grade II listed building back into public use once again, protecting the heritage of the hall which famously hosted The Beatles in their heyday and providing a multi-use space for a range of organisations and residents.

Finally, the third project to benefit would be Earlestown Rail Station that is regarded to have the oldest railway station building in the world still in passenger service. The bid will improve access to the station, bring the original building back into use and improve its connectivity to the town centre through enhanced entrance and signage. This is part of a bigger suite of funding bids, such as the ‘Access for All’ national programme to install lift access at the station, and this is exciting because it begins to bring together all the pieces of that puzzle.

The aim of all of these projects is to bring vitality and activity into the heart of the town centre and increase its use outside of the current market day programmes.

What do you think?

Let us know in the comments below.

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