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“Exciting time for Powys”

Created on 29/11/2021 @ 14:59


The latest column provided to us by the Leader of Powys County Council, Councillor Rosemarie Harris:

“The last month has been a very busy and exciting time for Powys with great success for the county will applications for national funding.

We started with a successful £15m bid under the UK Levelling Up Fund which will fund restoration work on a 4.4 mile stretch of the Montgomery Canal near Welshpool linking it to navigable sections and the national network.

The phased restoration and regeneration of the canal will see the waterway become a flagship

visitor attraction, providing long-term economic, cultural and recreational benefits to local


Our plans will protect and enhance the canal’s unique natural environment with the creation of three new off-line water-based nature reserves, to balance the anticipated increase in canal traffic.

We will be working with the canal’s owners and operators, the Canal and River Trust, with the project being delivered by the Montgomery Canal Partnership.

It is not just great news for the immediate canal vicinity but for north Powys as a whole, it will stimulate economic growth for the region attracting increased visitors, creating and protect jobs providing a boost to local economies.

We have seen from other canal restoration project in the UK the economic boost that this kind of infrastructure project can deliver, with huge increases in visitor numbers, with day-visitors becoming stay-visitors and increased spend in the local economy.

The Montgomery Canal was followed by more god news from the £4.8billion Levelling Up Fund, set up to support infrastructure, regeneration, transport, and heritage projects, with a £7m

announcement for projects in Brecon and Llandrindod Wells.

Although very different the three projects will trigger significant economic benefits, much needed facilities for communities and more cost-effective public service provision. The proposed investment will support and create jobs and support local companies during development.

In Brecon we are planning a multi-agency hub that will bring together organisations from the public, private and third sector in a flexible work environment. If successful, this would release much needed land and buildings within the town centre which could aid redevelopment and economic regeneration in a constrained development area.

Public land would become available providing much needed affordable housing and related social care in the town to provide much needed affordable housing and related social care in the town.

The second Brecon scheme is a plan to redevelop and maintain Theatre Brycheiniog, a strategically important arts centre in the heart of the town. The theatre has not seen any major investment since it opened in 1997 and needs support to maintain its longevity for residents.

The final successful bid was our plan to redevelop a brown-field site in Llandrindod Wells to provide good quality, affordable, energy efficient homes to meet local needs. The site has been derelict for more than 15-years and is an eyesore alongside the A483 trunk at the gateway to the town.

There is a real need for affordable housing in the town and this project helps satisfy that demand by removing a neglected and sightly area.

And earlier this month Six innovative Powys projects were successful under the new UK Community Renewal Fund, with nearly £22.7m being awarded to bids submitted by the county council, community and voluntary groups, and partners.

The national fund, which will be administered by the county council, aims to create opportunities to trial new approaches and innovative ideas at the local level. It will support projects that involve investment in skills, local businesses or communities and places or which support people into employment.

Attracting £25m to support county initiatives is no mean feat and I congratulate everyone involved in writing and submitting the successful bids. I look forward to seeing the projects and their benefits being delivered.”

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