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£150k boost for March high street vision

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A Fenland town has been awarded £150,000 to develop its bid for a multi-million investment boost to its town centre.

March is one of 50 towns nationally to progress to the next phase of the government's Future High Streets Fund, where detailed applications are required.

The scheme offers £675 million for projects to regenerate town centres.

March (13718677)
March (13718677)

Fenland Council leader Chris Boden said he was "absolutely delighted" with the recognition for March.

He said: “We know that the high street is no longer a place people need to go to, so we must focus on making it one that they want to go to.

"By developing mixed use space to support a cultural, retail and leisure offer, bringing greater population density into the town centre, and improving the public realm, we will ensure March is a resilient market town, which can adapt to irreversible global trends, such as online shopping.

“This opportunity has come at a perfect time for March, as work is already ongoing through the Growing Fenland Masterplans project.

"The fact that we have been shortlisted for the high street funding is further recognition from government and an endorsement of our plans as credible and deliverable.”

The council has also announced that public consultations on draft masterplans for both March and Chatteris have been extended until next Friday, July 26.

Ian Benney, the council's portfolio holder for growth, said: “Each town in Fenland is unique, with its own particular qualities and opportunities, as well as challenges.

"That’s why each town has its own masterplan, providing clear, bespoke strategies to build on their individual assets and support long-term sustainable growth.

“Local communities have been instrumental to developing these interim plans and we now need their input again to ensure the improvements put forward address the needs of residents and businesses alike.

“The masterplans will ultimately be used to attract additional funding from the government and private sector to make the towns’ ambitions a reality.”

Residents can have their say here.

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