Investment Planned for Rawtenstall Bus Station
|Author: Christine Smith||Published: 5th January 2012 16:06|
Rawtenstall Bus Station is to benefit as part of a Lancashire-wide investment programme of £50m, which has as its aim to "create a lasting legacy for Lancashire."
This investment has been made possible by Lancashire County Council making rapid progress on reducing its management costs and receiving a huge windfall from its efforts to protect council funds from the global financial crisis.
A scene from last year's Rawtenstall Annual Fair: With
investment in the Valley Centre and Bus Station, positive
changes are on the horizon for Rawtenstall town centre
The council's cabinet is proposing to make the one-off £50m investment in a series of 'legacy' projects that will benefit local people for years to come, with a strong emphasis on improving opportunities for young people and promoting economic growth.
The proposals include:
- A new £10m apprenticeships programme to help young people into work, supporting employers to take on apprentices and creating further professional apprenticeships within the county council.
- An investment of £5m over five years to support the costs of young people travelling to education, employment and training. Representatives of the Lancashire Youth Council will be invited to work with council officers to draw up the details of the scheme.
- £10m investment in a new programme of measures to promote economic development, encouraging businesses to grow and create jobs in Lancashire.
- £6m for the extension of the Youth Zone programme to provide young people with more activities and opportunities to access information and guidance.
- £3m towards a new programme that will employ armed forces veterans in mentoring young people in Lancashire secondary schools.
- £1m for refurbishing local libraries.
Rawtenstall's Bus Station is one of four projects that will be supported by the remaining £15m.
Speaking about the investment plans, Alyson Barnes, Leader of Rossendale Council, said: "This is fantastic news. We knew that taking control of the Valley Centre site would help to secure and speed up additional investment in the borough and this proves it. I would like to thank the county council for finally honouring this long held commitment."
Lancashire County Council leader Geoff Driver said: "At a time when we have to reduce our year-on-year spending, we're delighted to be able to announce this massive new investment and determined that it will leave a very positive, lasting legacy.
"Young people are at the heart of our proposals because they are the future. We want them to stay and prosper in Lancashire when they leave education and we recognise the difficult economic climate is making that particularly hard to do at the present time.
"As well as helping them into employment, these proposals will give more young people across the county access to activities, information and guidance through the expansion of our Youth Zone programme.
"We also plan to direct some of this investment into providing the right infrastructure and other conditions that make Lancashire a good place to do business, so that employers want to relocate or expand their operations here and create jobs for local people.
"Together with our plans to improve libraries and invest in local transport schemes, this is a package of investment that will make a visible difference to the county over the next five years and beyond."
The news comes during the first year of a three year plan that will see the county council reduce its annual budget by nearly £180m.