More funding to continue regeneration of town centres

Members of the Economy and Resources Committee at Dumfries and Galloway Council have allocated £1m from Council Tax on second homes to deliver 2021/22 Town Centre Living Fund (TCLF) projects.

By The Newsroom
Friday, 26th March 2021, 3:56 pm
Stranraer town centre
Stranraer town centre

The approach taken by the council to increase the provision of housing in town centres has received national praise and recognition as best practice.

Previous allocations have enabled multi-million pound investment from sources including private investment, the Regeneration Capital Grant Fund, Affordable Housing Supply Programme (AHSP), Rural Housing Fund and Scottish Land Fund.

Delivery of the TCLF aligns with the objectives of the Borderlands Growth Deal to stimulate the repurposing of towns and centres across the area and to attract and retain the working age population.

It also helps the council to support the local retail and construction sectors, create jobs and support supply chains while providing much needed homes.

Council investment in town centres should attract further funding from elsewhere; the 2020/21 TCLF allocations made to date are estimated to support further local investment in excess of £9.3m from a range of funding streams. These include the AHSP, Rural Housing Fund and Registered Social Landlords (RSLs) finances and private property owners’ own resources.

Thus far funding allocated to various projects has seen the delivery of more than 40 homes within walking distance of local high streets as well as bringing empty properties back into use.

Rob Davidson, chairman of Economy and Resources Committee said: “The Town Centre Living Fund contributes to the council priorities to build the local economy and urgently respond to climate change and transition to a carbon neutral region as well as being an inclusive council.

"We can revitalise our town centres through the development of high quality affordable housing.

"Increasing the numbers of people living in our town centres will in turn boost the local economy.

"As well as the TCLF we also provide ‘Below Tolerable Standards’ grants, to ensure that existing accommodation is brought up to safe modern standards.”