Hartlepool joins call for new Community Wealth Fund to help left behind neighbourhoods level up
Hartlepool council chiefs are calling on the Government to create a new Community Wealth Fund as part of its Levelling Up agenda to help left behind neighbourhoods.
Hartlepool Borough Council has joined the Community Wealth Fund Alliance cross-sector group of more than 430 organisations.
They are urging the Government to use tens of millions of pounds of dormant assets to create a new Community Wealth Fund to invest in the social infrastructure of “left behind” neighbourhoods in the country.
The alliance says the fund would ideally allow communities to lead decision making on how the money is spent over 10-15 years.
It would initially be used to support the 225 most left behind council wards across England.
The leader of Hartlepool Borough Council, Councillor Shane Moore, said: “It is well documented that Hartlepool has a number of communities that suffer from high levels of deprivation.
“As an authority, we have an ongoing commitment to address this situation and anything that helps us to do that, including the creation of a Community Wealth Fund, is to be welcomed.
“We look forward to working with other members of the Community Wealth Fund Alliance to bring about positive change that will directly benefit residents of Hartlepool.”
The Community Wealth Fund Alliance says close to £900m is likely to be available initially through the expansion of the dormant assets scheme covering stocks, shares, bonds, insurance and pension policies.
Matt Leach, chair of the Community Wealth Fund Alliance, said: "This response needs to be one that shifts the dial, not just returning communities to where they were pre-pandemic but transforming their fortunes over the long term.”