After over 200 entries from around the country, Oldham has been included on a shortlist of 50 towns for the government’s Future High Streets Fund. Oldham Council will now receive £150,000 to develop their plans for the town centre in more detail, with the aim of securing up to £25 million to invest in the town.
Councillor Sean Fielding, Leader of Oldham Council, said: “We’re pleased that our Future High Streets Fund bid has been selected to progress to the next phase.
“If successful our bid will look to help improve, adapt and modernise Oldham town centre.
“What people want from their high streets is changing so we must adapt so we can draw people in to use areas like this.
“Many people now do most of their shopping, pay the bills, and do jobs which meant they had to go into town, online.
“Our future town centre of the future will have to offer a better mix of employment, homes, culture, leisure and heritage attractions.
“Our town centre will always have shops, but people now want a bit more – something to visit, see or do that they can’t just do with a click or a swipe on a screen. They want a modern and vibrant place that has something for different members of the community
“We’ve submitted a strong bid and with the funding we’ve now received we’ll continue our work building a business case., which will also support our work around building our night time economy.
“Competition will be fierce because retail’s decline is affecting every high street but if we’re successful we can use this money for important steps like addressing empty shop units, making the environment more attractive and improving the infrastructure.”