A bid for £25 million from the ‘Towns Fund’ toward a regeneration project in Bolton has been finalised the council leader saying he will be “very, very surprised” if the application is not successful.
The Greater Manchester borough of Bolton was announced as one of the 101 towns across the UK which would be eligible for support from the government’s £3.6 billion ‘Towns Fund’, which was announced back in September 2019.
The fund intends to drive the economic regeneration of towns to deliver long-term economic growth.
If Bolton’s finalised application can convince the government of the scheme’s value for money, the borough could have up to £25m allocated to it, which will need to be spent by the end of March 2026, according to the Bolton News.
The borough has already received £1 million in advance funding and a decision on the rest is expected before the end of the year.
Each town nominated for funding is required to establish a Town Deal Board – which is the body through which the vision and strategy for the town is defined – and the board must be chaired by a representative of the local business community.
The Bolton board has now finalised its priority schemes for the bid, while rejecting others.
Among the schemes which have been put forward in the finalised Bolton regeneration plan are for The Wellness Centre to have a high-end spa and leisure facility next to the already-planned Le Mans Hotel in the heart of the town centre.
Bolton Council say this luxury spa is intended to “draw in day visitors” to the town.
Speaking at a council cabinet meeting – which approved the bid this week – Bolton Council leader David Greenhalgh, said: “Everything is positive so far. We already been allocated £1m to get proposals up and running and we should hear back by end of the year.
“The government want to see development happen very quickly with timescales starting in March and April.”
The ‘Towns Fund’ bid is said to be entirely separate from the £100m investment planned for elsewhere the town centre over the next decade – which is to go toward leisure and culture, office and residential development – and the council hopes it will be combined with up to £1bn of private sector investment.
When challenged by opposition leader Nick Peel on what Bolton Council’s ‘plan B’ was if the funding was denied, Cllr Greenhalgh responded: “The Towns Fund is an important part of our regeneration plans but not the whole picture. It’s not an either or within the main regeneration plans – All our eggs are not in one basket.
“These words could come back to haunt me, but I shall be very, very surprised if we don’t get some proportion of our bid for the towns fund.
“If it doesn’t happen, it won’t mean these plans will go to waste.
“We will have some very good schemes built up, oven ready as you may want to call them, to move ahead whenever any more grants come together whether from Greater Manchester or government.”
Other schemes forming part of the bid include another priority project to improve pedestrian connections to the transport interchange, Le Mans Crescent and Newport Street, all in and around the town centre, and a third scheme could see further extension and upgrade to Bolton’s Central Museum and Art Gallery to “provide an improved destination and focal point to the civic quarter”.
Among the schemes left out of the proposal are plans to redevelop Elizabeth House.
This is said to be due to Bolton Council not being in ownership of the building and “the case for public intervention at this time is unclear”.
Molly-Mae Hague and Tommy Fury reveal unusual baby name
Molly-Mae Hague has finally put the rumours to bed and revealed the name of her first baby with boxer boyfriend Tommy Fury.
Users on social media had been speculating on the name they would choose for their baby girl for weeks.
Many people believed that she would choose Nephele, which translates to ‘Cloud’ inGreek mythology.
That rumour kicked off because of all the cloud emojis the social media star was using in her posts about her pregnancy.
Molly-Mae and Tommy shared their happy news about their new arrival with a joint post last night, showing a black and white photo of the trio in hospital, captioned with the date of their baby’s birth – 23/01/23.
She then added further updates and adorable photos in her Instagram stories, writing: “One week old today. I can’t believe we get to keep you forever.
“Becoming your mum has been the best thing to ever happen to me… it doesn’t seem possible but my love for you grows with each passing moment.
“There is no feeling like holding you in my arms little one, my heart literally explodes.
“Thank you for entering the world safely for us and blessing us with the gift of being your parents.
“We promise to love and care for you unconditionally forever.”
Tommy posted: “I’ll protect you forever my little girl.”
Featured image: Instagram, @mollymae
Manchester Airport is hiring 1,500 new staff in preparation for a ‘busy summer’
Manchester Airport is looking to recruit 1,500 new staff members across the security, customer services, car parks, hospitality, and other sectors.
It’s all in preparation for what the Airport expects to be another “busy summer”.
Having already more recruited more than 700 new staff last year, the UK’s third largest airport wants to give potential new staff a taste at what it’s like to work there by hosting its very-own careers fair at Greater Manchester Chamber of Commerce on Tuesday 7 February to showcase all the roles on offer within a wide range of sectors and companies inside the premises.
The Airport is preparing for a busy summer season as it enters its first full year free of COVID-related restrictions since 2019.
A total of 1,500 roles are on offer within sectors such as customer services, security, hospitality, and car parking.
More than 25 other firms with operations at the Airport will also be taking part in the jobs fair.
Some of these companies include restaurants and retailers like Boots, Costa Coffee, JD Sport, World Duty Free, Wagamama, and Barburrito, as well as within airline and package holiday provider, Jet2.com, aviation service providers, including Seetec Plus, Menzies Aviation, ABM, Swissport, DNATA, ICTS UK LTD, and Excess Baggage, and several housekeeping service providers.
The Manchester Airport Academy will also be at the careers fair to give people an insight into its pre-employment support courses – which include fully-accredited training schemes for those on jobseekers allowances, who need additional assistance prior to applying for jobs.
Attendees at the jobs fair will get the chance to engage directly with employers, put any questions they may have to those who are recruiting, and boost their chances of getting a job at the Airport.
They’ll also get to learn more about what employers are looking for from applicants.
Successful applicants will get to take advantage of a wide range of employee benefits on offer at Manchester Airport Group (MAG) – which include everything from discounts on public transport when commuting, and free on-site car parking whilst working and when going on holiday, to an excellent pension scheme, training programmes, retail discounts, and so much more.
Speaking ahead of the jobs fair next week, Chris Woodroofe – Managing Director at Manchester Airport – said: “This is always an exciting time of year for us, as we look to welcome new colleagues on board ahead of the busy summer season.
“There is a wide range of opportunities available and I look forward to meeting the successful job-seekers out-and-about at the airport, following on from this event.”