Welcome Back Fund and Reopening High Street Safely Fund

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Welcome back fund

The Welcome Back Fund builds on the earlier Reopening High Streets Safely Fund to support the safe reopening of high streets and town centres to help build back better from the Covid 19 pandemic. This fund is enabling Cheshire East Council to put in place measures to create and promote a safe environment for local trade and tourism. In total, Cheshire East Council has been allocated up to £679,067.

What was done

We have worked with town councils across the borough and business groups to implement a range of activities from June 2020 to encourage the public to visit their local town centres safely.

The work has included:

  • obtaining data to identify changes in visitor/consumer behaviour (including footfall) in each of our town centres, and using this to inform recovery plans
  • campaigns to promote safe ‘reopening’ of town centres to residents/visitors and instil a positive ‘open for business’ impression to residents/visitors, alongside safety and social distancing messages
  • installation of temporary traffic management measures  and awareness raising signs and pavement markings to enable social-distancing in 16 High Streets across Cheshire East
  • erection of temporary barriers to widen footways, in locations of high footfall where social-distancing was challenging
  • providing deckchairs, for town councils to make available for outdoor town centre community events and use
  • providing town councils with gazebos to make available for outdoor town centre community events and use

What is planned

We are continuing to work with town councils across Cheshire East to implement a range of additional activities including:

  • further information and communications to encourage responsible visitor behaviour and reassure and welcome communities back to the high street
  • further place-based marketing campaigns to encourage more visitors to high streets and town centres and promote local events
  • temporary additional planters and planting to improve the attractiveness of town centres to visitors
  • provision of folding chairs and tables to town councils to be made available for outdoor town centre community events and use  in some areas to create a welcoming feel for visitors
  • purchasing of equipment to enable town centre cleaning by volunteer
  • painter/decorator to visit 11 town centres to paint tired street signs, benches, cycle racks within the town centre

About this project

The project is receiving up to £679,067 of funding from the England European Regional Development Fund as part of the European Structural and Investment Funds Growth Programme 2014-2020.

The Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government (and in London the intermediate body Greater London Authority) is the Managing Authority for European Regional Development Fund. Established by the European Union, the European Regional Development Fund helps local areas stimulate their economic development by investing in projects which will support innovation, businesses, create jobs and local community regenerations.

Page last reviewed: 03 September 2021