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The Future High Street Fund was announced in the 2018 Budget to support the development of high streets that are seeking to offer more than traditional retail space.

The Fund is worth £1 billion and will support 100 town centres in England.

What can the Fund be used for?

The Fund will be used to develop the infrastructure of town centres so that they can adapt to the changing retail environment.

The Fund will not make awards to local areas seeking to expand traditional retail on their high streets.

The Fund will mostly be used to fund capital projects such as:

  • Improving transport access to town centres
  • Improving vehicle and pedestrian flow in town centres
  • Congestion relieving infrastructure
  • Infrastructure to facilitate new housing and office space
  • Projects that seek to substitute under-used and persistently vacant retail units into residential units.

The remainder of the Fund will assist local areas to produce long-term strategies for their high streets, and will fund a new High Streets Taskforce that will provide expertise and practical support to the successful bids.

Shortlisted towns

As of September 2019, 100 town centres have been shortlisted. These towns will receive up to £150,000 to develop detailed proposals. They will be assisted by the High Streets Task Force.

Eventually, depending on the scale of their plans, each town will be offered funding of up to £25 million. Successful bids will have to demonstrate that they have secured shared funding and support from the relevant local authority, local businesses or other organisations.

High Street Task Force

The High Streets Task Force was launched on 2 July 2019. The group’s role is to support the towns shortlisted for the Future High Streets Fund though the process of drawing up their plans for redevelopment.

The Task Force is composed of experts who will provide tailored guidance to each of the shortlisted towns.

High Streets Heritage Action Zones

Part of the Future High Streets Fund has been reserved to support high streets in conservations areas.

The High Streets Heritage Action Zones Fund is open to applications from high streets within conservations zones and is administered by Historic England. Successful applicants will demonstrate that the funds will be used to improve the physical realm around the high street, and support activities that encourage people to engage with heritage.


Documents to download

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