St Helens Town Centre Skyline
A list of six major projects has been identified. Credit: via Muse Developments

St Helens firms up intentions for £25m Towns Fund cash 

Dan Whelan

Glass Futures, a new bus station, and the creation of almost 400 homes are among the projects in line to benefit from the town’s government grant. 

St Helens Council’s cabinet will meet next Wednesday to drill down into the detail of how the £25m Towns Fund cash will be spent after the authority signed heads of terms with the government in August. 

The next step in unlocking the funding is to formulate business cases for each of the projects in line to benefit. 

The full list of six projects is as follows.

Town Centre Regeneration & Living 

Towns Fund cash: £7.2m

Total project cost: £40m 

The project involves the delivery of a town centre homes, being developed in partnership with English Cities Fund. 

The scheme features the reclamation and repurposing of 10 acres of brownfield land and the delivery of 99 homes and 73,000 sq ft of commercial space. The project also aims to unlock land for an additional 283 homes in later phases. 

Glass Futures phase two

Towns Fund cash: £6.9m

Total project cost: £34.25m 

St Helens Glass Futures

The council unanimously approved the plans for Glass Futures earlier this year. Credit: via planning documents

Glass Futures is billed as a world-class centre of excellence for medical glass production, research and development. The first phase of the project, approved by the council earlier this year, features a £54m, 160,000 sq ft glass research facility. 

The second phase includes a 107,000 sq ft centre of excellence building and the redevelopment of Cannington Shaw bottle shop into a visitor centre. 

Connected Places

Towns Fund cash: £3.25m

Total project cost: £21.7m 

An overarching programme for the town centre that includes enhancements to key public transport nodes, including a new 94,000 sq ft bus station, upgrades to around 4.4 acres of public realm, and the creation of a cycle hub in the town centre. 

Healthy Communities

Towns Fund cash: £3m

Total project cost: £33m 

This project aims to create a healthier St Helens and features proposals for a 41,500 sq ft youth and community zone, and the creation of a 47,000 sq ft health innovation hub.

Digital Infrastructure

Towns Fund cash: £2.5m 

Total project cost: £26.5m 

The provision of full fibre broadband across St Helens borough to link in with the proposed Liverpool City Region Backhaul Network.

St Helens Heritage World

Towns Fund cash: £890,000

Total project cost: £11.9m 

World Of Glass 0

Improvements are planned at the World of Glass. Credit: Google Earth

A reimagined World of Glass experience, coupled with enhancements to public realm and the creation of a new park totalling seven acres complete with a and digitally enabled heritage trail. 

The six projects outlined are set to generate significant match funding from local organisations and other funding sources, according to St Helens Council.

Additional funding for the projects could come from sources including ECF, the Levelling Up Fund, Arts Council, Torus and Merseytravel, among others.

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