£1m secured for Whitefriargate regeneration

Hull City Council has secured £1m to support the regeneration of Whitefriargate under the Humber High Street Challenge fund.

The fund, from the Humber LEP, is providing grants aimed at encouraging private sector landlords and property owners in each of the four Humber local authorities to undertake building and conversion projects that animate high streets, diversify the traditional high street offer and bring unused floor space back into use.

In total the Humber LEP is providing £1.95m in funding across the four local authorities.

With additional match funding sought from the Council and from Historic England under the Hull Old Town Heritage Action Zone scheme, and when accounting for private investment, this means a total of £3.9m could be invested in Whitefriargate.

The project will aim to deliver early improvement works in advance of larger scale investments, including the Government’s Future High Streets Fund.

It was recently announced that Hull City Council has been successful in the first stage of bidding for capital investment from the Future High Streets Fund.

Councillor Daren Hale, portfolio holder for regeneration and economic investment, said: “Whitefriargate is an important part of the city centre and the council has been proactively looking at ways to regenerate the area.

“This funding allows us to offer match funding to investors, as well as improving the aesthetics and layout of the street. We saw with the Old Town Grant Scheme how match funding can encourage investment and revitalise an area. Our aim is to see the same success on Whitefriargate.”

Chair of the Humber LEP, Lord Haskins, said: “The Humber High Street Challenge Fund has the potential to make a real difference to the region’s high streets.

“Measures such as diversification and repurposing of traditional retail space could breathe new life into our town and city centres, helping the Humber become a more attractive place to live and work.

“I am delighted that the Humber’s Local Growth Fund allocation, which we have secured from Government, could support regeneration of the region’s high streets and have a positive impact for our residents and businesses alike.”

Charles Smith, deputy regional director for Historic England, said: “We’re delighted that Hull City Council has secured funding from the Humber’s Local Growth Fund allocation to support regeneration works on Whitefriargate.

“The grant will add further value to Historic England’s investment in the Hull Old Town Heritage Action Zone to secure the long term future of its many historically significant buildings.”

Hull City Council’s Old Town Grant Scheme supported both new and existing businesses in the Old Town which played a major role in the successful regeneration of places like Trinity Market.

Under the Old Town Grant Scheme, £800k of Local Growth Funding to the Council by the Humber LEP unlocked a further £1.1m of private investment within the historic core of the city centre.

It is proposed that Hull City Council will act as the accountable body for the delivery of the Humber High Street Challenge Fund scheme which will involve processing grants for the target high street areas within the other three Humber local authorities

Councillors will now be asked for permission enter into a formal agreement to deliver the scheme with the LEP.

This is expected to be formally agreed in August.