Wide-ranging proposals to transform the heart of Radcliffe have received a huge financial boost.

Bury has won £20 million from the Government’s Levelling Up Fund to build the new Radcliffe Hub and create new facilities for local businesses and public services.

The projects are a key part of wider regeneration of the town centre, which will include affordable housing, a new high school and improved leisure, skills and employment opportunities.

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Coun Eamonn O’Brien, leader of the council, said: “This is tremendous news for everyone in Radcliffe.

“We were up against tough competition to win this money, and it is a complete vindication of our belief and our vision for the future of the town.

“We now have a unique opportunity to bring about real transformation and create a new Radcliffe where everyone wants to live, work, study and play.”

Regeneration plans for Radcliffe include a civic hub building

Coun O’Brien added: “This is the result of two and a half years of hard work, during which the council has been putting all the key elements in place.

“We drew up the draft Radcliffe Regeneration Strategy back in early 2020, consulted Radcliffe people over the summer 2020, and appointed Sir Howard Bernstein to lead the delivery board.

“Earlier this year, we bought key buildings in the town centre to drive the project forward, and worked with Star Academies to get the funding for the new secondary school.

“Crucially, everyone in the community will have a say and a stake in this.

“It’s not a council plan, it’s everyone’s plan, and we will be having wide consultation over the coming months.

“I urge everyone to take part and pay their full role in making Radcliffe the place we all want it to be and know it can be.”

Council leader Eamonn O'Brien after hearing after hearing the news of the funding boost

The whole project is estimated to cost a total of £42m, with £20m from the Levelling Up Fund and the remainder from Bury Council and external sources.

The main hub building will be the council’s first carbon zero building and will feature a leisure centre with swimming pool, gym and fitness studios, a new library and skills centre, and a community space for meetings and events.

It will also have office accommodation and public service providers supporting individuals and families with their health, skills, employment and well-being needs.

The Market Chambers will be refurbished on all floors and remodelled to support local businesses moving into it.

The projects are a key part of wider regeneration of the town centre

The basement of the market will also be refurbished as a large events space for community and private functions and activities, served by a new accessible lift.

New car parking spaces will also be created and improvements made to the wider public realm connecting this campus of buildings and the wider town centre.

The Carnegie Library will remain open to the public and operate as an adult education, skills and enterprise centre.

Subject to design work and planning permission, work could start on site next September and be complete in summer 2024.

Coun O’Brien added: “This is about so much more than just new buildings.

“We are targeting regeneration in one of the poorest parts of our borough, but also a town with huge opportunity and potential to flourish.

“By replacing poor quality buildings, and encouraging increasing numbers of people to visit, live and work in Radcliffe, we are aiming to put the pride and the heart back into the centre of Radcliffe and be the catalyst of economic regeneration in the town.”