A £5m injection of Government cash is on the way to Hartlepool as part of the town’s Vision plans.
The money will help to bring in new creative industries and hopefully help to keep the best students within the town once they have completed their courses.
Yesterday, the Hartlepool Mail told how £13m of Government money had been announced for the Tees Valley. Today, Hartlepool was revealed to have clinched a big portion of the money.
More detail on the plans for the town were also revealed and they tie in with the Vision proposals.
The Hartlepool Vision aims to regenerate a total of eight key areas and they are the town centre, Jacksons Landing/Trincomalee Wharf and the marina, Church Street, Seaton Carew, the Headland, Wynyard, the Port and Queens Meadow. The proposals could eventually bring 2,000 jobs to the area.
As part of the proposal, Church Street will be developed as a Hartlepool Innovation Skills Quarter which will create small scale, high quality workspace and studios.
Coun Christopher Akers-Belcher, the leader of Hartlepool Council, said: “This is great news and will help enormously to transform the Church Street area.
“Developing an Innovation & Skills Quarter is one of our priorities within the Hartlepool Vision to regenerate key areas of Hartlepool, create jobs and lay the foundations for the town’s future prosperity.
“This funding will enable us to realise our vision and create a hub of modern business space and support to encourage creative industries such as technology, art and design and photography. Too many students attending our colleges end up leaving town to find jobs elsewhere and this initiative aims to reverse that trend so that they stay in Hartlepool, creating wealth and employment for our town.”
He described the proposals as “a very exciting time for this area of the town. Already, we have helped to create 56 new student accommodation units, a new College of Art will be built and plans are underway to make the environment much more attractive.
“Following yesterday’s announcement, the Council will be working closely with the College of Art & Design, the College of Further Education, the local community and others to ensure that the funding has the maximum possible impact on our town.”
Martin Raby, principal and chief executive of Cleveland College of Art & Design, said: “This is exciting news for Hartlepool and the College of Art. We are already working very closely with the Council on the development of Church Street as a result of our new building due to open in September 2016.
“The project announced today will be a substantial boost to plans for the growth of the College and the development of the creative economy in the town. I’m confident that it will result in the transformation of the area as a key part of the council’s masterplan for the town.”
Darren Hankey, the principal and chief executive of Hartlepool College of Further Education, said: “Any money we can get from central government, which ultimately comes to the college, is a good thing.
“The development of Church Street is really exciting.”
Mr Hankey added: “It is a really exciting time for the new Innovation Skills Quarter of Hartlepool.”