West Yorkshire secures community renewal funding

brown and white concrete building during daytime

Several projects across West Yorkshire have been successful in securing over £2.5m of funding from the UK government’s Community Renewal Fund (UKCRF).

The UKCRF awards funding to local areas to support economic recovery from the pandemic by piloting new projects to bolster communities.

However, the Mayor of West Yorkshire has criticized the government for failing to allocate long-term funding to deliver levelling up.

The Mayor of West Yorkshire, Tracy Brabin, said: ‘We welcome this funding for the region and are pleased that the Government has awarded so many projects that link to green infrastructure, unleashing the skills and talent of young people and promoting green careers and skills training.

‘While we are pleased that Government has listened to our concerns and extended delivery deadlines by three months, delays to the funding announcement may still negatively impact some successful bids. It is also disappointing that Calderdale has not been allocated any funding, despite being selected by Government as a “priority area”.

‘Small, short-term pots of funding such as this which force communities to compete in beauty contests will do little to deliver on Government’s levelling up promises. We need greater certainty, security and stability of funding for our region, with proper local control over decision making. This would allow us to be more flexible and innovative, unlocking the enormous potential that exists across West Yorkshire.

‘We will continue to engage Government to ensure the new approach to the UK Shared Prosperity Fund meets the needs of our region.’

The successful bids included:

  • A Better Future Post Covid: Empowering Communities in the Wakefield District – Wakefield Council
  • Buck Wood Community Woodland Masterplan – Inspired Neighbourhoods CIC
  • Building Our Future – Bradford Council
  • ‘Go Green’ A Curriculum for the future – Wakefield Council
  • Healthier Working Futures – St James University
  • Participation in the Arts and Creative Economy (PACE) – Kirklees Council
  • Retrofit Hub – West Yorkshire Combined Authority

In related news, the government is supporting 477 locally led projects that aim to help regenerate towns, villages and coastal communities and deliver net zero through the £200m Community Renewal Fund.

Photo by Michael Cummins


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