Warrington Borough Council has confirmed that it has submitted three bids for a share of the government’s Levelling Up Fund, with the aim of raising the standard of health and wellbeing, as well as sustainable transport.
The three bids come to a total of around £47 million, with bid one focusing on improving health and wellbeing in Warrington South. This will include a new sports centre that will provide crucial accessible facilities, designed with people with disabilities in mind. An indoor wheelchair sports hall, new artificial grass pitch and a new training facility that will support Warrington Wolves’ women’s, men’s, youth, physical and learning disability teams.
Broomfields Leisure Centre will be transformed with investment in a new, high quality swimming pool and a new fitness suite. The final stage of the first bid will see the development of a new performing arts centre in Lymm. This will provide much needed performance space for the arts scene and will be developed in collaboration with the local high school. This centre will serve the east and south of Warrington, as well as north Cheshire.
Cabinet member for Leisure and Community, Cllr Tony Higgins, said:
“Our Levelling Up Round 2 bid shows how ambitious we are in our plans to drive up the quality of people’s lives by delivering transformational projects across our communities.
“The schemes we are proposing would bring huge benefits to many people, throughout Warrington, for years to come, encouraging more people to participate in sports and the arts, improving physical health and mental wellbeing, and encouraging individual, social, and community development.
“I’m hopeful that the government will share in our ambitions, and we will be successful in securing this vital funding.”
The second bid is focusing on ‘Reconnecting the settlements’ of Warrington North, through the development of three new active travel routes. These routes are aiming to encourage modal shift, as well as active lifestyles to improve the health and wellbeing of the local community, as well as helping the environment.
The third bid is further based around active transport, following the council’s ‘First and Last mile’ Connectivity Plan. This project will enable movement along an east to west corridor through the urban centre of Warrington, allowing people to access safer and more direct walking and cycling journeys.
Councillor Hans Mundry, cabinet member for transportation, highways, and public realm, commented:
“We have strong ambitions, through our Local Transport Plan, to transform the way people travel around Warrington, to reduce car dependency and to deliver high quality, well-connected active travel facilities. I’m pleased that a key focus of our Levelling Up bid is the continuation of this important work.
“If we are successful in securing this funding, it would closely follow the success we’ve had in obtaining funds from the Warrington Town Deal, Active Travel Fund and Bus Service Improvement Plan. This would be another major boost to our ambitious sustainable transport programme, enabling us to deliver a number of schemes across Warrington and which would make travelling sustainably easier and more attractive for everyone.”