Investment in Nuneaton’s leisure facilities top of the list if town lands Government funding

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The Nuneaton community is calling for investment in the town’s leisure facilities to be top of the list if the town successfully lands multi-million-pound government funding.

Nuneaton is one of 100 towns across the country that has been selected to bid for funding from the Government’s Towns Fund Initiative – where up to £25 million per town is available – and an initial consultation with Nuneaton residents on how the money could be spent has received nearly 300 submissions.

The responses are being compiled into a shortlist, with more than a third of responses calling for a focus on the town’s arts, culture and heritage scene; including funding for leisure facilities, art venues and promotion of the town’s history.

Around 22 per cent of respondents are also keen to see an improvement in the town’s transport network – including investment in the road and cycling infrastructure, more trains and a wider choice of car parking.

More than 40 respondents are also calling urban regeneration to claim a slice of cash to support the town’s markets, as well as for house building; while others staked a claim for enterprise initiatives for the next regeneration of entrepreneurs.

These suggestions, along with several others, are currently being reviewed before being added to a shortlist of projects.

This shortlist will be revealed in a second round of consultation and then a plan of action, called a Town Investment Plan, will be drawn up to submit for the Government funding later in the year.

A Town Deal Board – made up of business representatives, Nuneaton and Bedworth Borough Councillors, Warwickshire County Councillors and representatives from the Coventry and Warwickshire Local Enterprise Partnership, Warwickshire CAVA, the health sector and community – has been created to bring a funding bid together.

Sean Farnell, Chair of the Nuneaton Town Deal Board, said: “More than half of respondents either want to see more support for leisure activities and transport infrastructure in the town – both of which are going to play a key role in helping Nuneaton to fulfil its potential.

“We know that many residents are also proud of the town’s heritage, which was reflected in the responses that we had, and this will also be taken into consideration when we draw up our shortlist of projects.

“The first round of consultation has been a vital exercise for us, as we now have an accurate idea of what type of investment will help to inject further impetus into Nuneaton’s economy and wider community and reinforce it as one of the leading jewels in the Warwickshire crown.

“We will be releasing the shortlist for the public to feedback from the end of September, and would urge as many people as possible to feedback on these, as it will be crucial for the plans that we submit to Government later in the autumn as we bid to win a significant amount of money that has potential to lead a lasting legacy for the town’s future generations.”

Other towns from across the region which are part of the 100 towns initiative include Hereford, Redditch, Swindon and Worcester.