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Council secures investment for four of Bath’s local high streets

High Street sign

Four high streets in Bath will benefit from a raft of improvements to attract footfall and breathe new life into the areas thanks to a £488,000 funding package.

Twerton High Street, Moorland Road, Weston High Street and Mount Road will enjoy interventions including new planting, street furniture, cycle storage and public art to improve the environment for residents and visitors, as part of the Bath Local Centres High Street Improvement Scheme.

Bath & North East Somerset Council secured £295,000 from the West of England Combined Authority’s ‘Love our High Streets’ grant programme for the project.

A further £193,000 will be contributed from other funding sources, including £145,000 from the Community Infrastructure Levy and an additional £35,000 linked funding from the West of England Combined Authority Vacant Unit Action Project.

The improvements to the four high streets will be tailored to the needs of each area. An initial round of community engagement took place in autumn and winter 2021 and residents will have further opportunities to contribute to the detailed design of the scheme as the project progresses.

The project supports the ‘15-minute neighbourhood’ principle detailed in the council’s One Shared Vision which aims for most of people’s daily needs to be met within a short walk or cycle.

In some locations, vacant shop units will be brought back into use and community events will take place to encourage a greater sense of identity for each high street.

Councillor Richard Samuel, Deputy Leader and Cabinet Member for Economic Development and Resources, approved the Combined Authority funding in a single member decision today (June 1).

Councillor Samuel said: “The project will rejuvenate four of our local high streets and will complement our Liveable Neighbourhoods ambitions. It aims to improve the economic resilience of the high streets through improving the street environment and supporting greater animation of public space. Importantly, it also supports our climate emergency goals by creating a more pleasant environment for local shops and services, the presence of which enable people to meet their needs locally, so I am pleased to approve this funding. 

“Breathing new life into our high streets is about creating spaces where people want to spend time. We’ll be asking for your views again to help shape the detailed designs later this summer.”

Speaking about the announcement, Metro Mayor Dan Norris said: “Our high streets are not just the centre of the towns and villages that make up our amazing region; they are the very heart and soul of our communities. I’m so pleased a £295,000 cash injection from the West of England Combined Authority I lead is helping bring Bath's high streets fire on all cylinders. I know when the works are completed, Bathonians will enjoy more vibrant and busier high streets that continue to bring people together and remain the beating heart of the Bath way of life.”

View the single member decision here