Knowsley's Huyton bid aims to support a £127m town centre regeneration strategy. Credit: Knowsley Council

Knowsley prepares trio of Levelling Up Fund bids 

The redevelopment of Huyton town centre and projects in Prescot and Halewood feature within a hat-trick of proposals worth up to £60m that the council is planning to submit to government. 

Knowsley’s second round Levelling Up Fund bid comes after the council was overlooked for funding in the first round. The council’s rejection prompted its Labour leader to question the government’s funding methodology. 

Earlier this year, Cllr Graham Morgan accused the government of favouring bids from areas where Conservative MPs needed support. 

As the window for second round bids opens, the council is hoping to finally get its hands on a share of the £4.8bn pot, with three locations primed to benefit. 

Knowsley’s Levelling Up Fund bids will seek to improve local transport, support town centre and high street regeneration, and maintain and expand the UK’s portfolio of cultural and heritage assets, according to the council. 

“Having previously been rejected for round one funding, we are working hard to strengthen our Huyton bid, as well as developing new bids for Prescot and Halewood, in order to attract this much-needed funding,” said Cllr Tony Brennan, cabinet member for regeneration and economic development. 

Huyton bid 

The council will aim to strengthen its rejected round one bid for Huyton Village Centre to accelerate its 10-year, £127m redevelopment plans for the area. 

Knowsley’s £20m funding bid would support the creation of a new mixed-use commercial district, which includes new office accommodation, residential development, a village green and a hotel. 

Knowsley is in advanced talks over appointing a development partner for the scheme. 

Shakespeare North is due to complete in July. Credit: Knowsley Council

Prescot bid 

A joint bid with St Helens Council is being prepared to reposition both Prescot and St Helens town centres as cultural and leisure destinations. 

The Prescot bid, which could be for up to £20m, would aim to build on the creation of Shakespeare North Playhouse, due to open in July. 

The bid will focus on further developing the cultural and leisure offer in the town, enhancing existing facilities as well as creating new retail and leisure opportunities, the council said.

Plans include investment in the Prescot Picture Palace – a grade two-listed building that will be restored as a cinema – and improving links with Prescot Museum. 

Halewood bid 

The Halewood bid is at a less advanced stage than those for Huyton and Prescot but could also be worth up to £20m. 

Knowsley is currently exploring development and investment proposals for Halewood in response to the growth in the size and population of the town. 

“Plans will seek to ensure that both existing and new residents have access to appropriate recreational facilities and experiences that are befitting such a township,” the council said. 

Further details will be shared as the Halewood bid develops. 

Cllr Brennan added: “We are committed to ensuring our communities have access to the very best facilities and the Levelling Up Fund will help us to accelerate our development plans and bring us in line with other parts of the country. 

“Through the delivery of our plans, we will be creating vibrant places where people choose to come and live, work or visit.” 

The deadline for bids is Wednesday 6 July 2022. It is expected that successful bids will be announced in October 2022. 

Your Comments

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Pie in the sky, more Tory B.S. We,LL never see a penny!!!

By Anonymous

Huyton is lucky as it has a station in the town centre, Halewood needs a station on the Merseyrail network as it is expanding rapidly, Prescot has a station but it`s a bit off centre which is unfortunate as the new Shakespeare Theatre is very central.
All these centre have great potential but Huyton really needs a re-model as the road system skirts round the town centre not through it , thus making things awkward.

By Anonymous

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