Central Bedfordshire Council news and press releases

£70million of funding for new schools and services secured for Biggleswade

Monday, 19 August 2019

Central Bedfordshire Council, working with partners including Biggleswade Town Council, has been granted £70million of central government funding for Biggleswade.

This significant investment will bring huge benefits to both the existing community and support the planned housing growth of around 3,000 to the east of the town. The bid secures funding for power, education, rail and road infrastructure.

The money will be used to fund building a new secondary school; a transport interchange at the train station; and a replacement bridge to the north of Biggleswade where the Green Wheel Bridleway crosses the east coast mainline for people, cyclists and horse riders.

The money will also be used to upgrade the power capacity for the local community, allowing for ever increasing demands and business growth.

New state-of-the-art power infrastructure will more than double the amount of electricity available to the area. Not only will this support the increased housing but also business growth and jobs. It also means Biggleswade can move towards more sustainable energy supplies and residents can easily add high demand power use, like electrical charging points for vehicles, to their homes.

We submitted a detailed business case bid for the government’s Housing Infrastructure Fund (HIF) back in March 2019. Over the summer we’ve answered another 200 or more questions. Following this highly competitive bidding process against 65 other business cases, the full funding was granted, and announced by the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government on Saturday 17, August 2019.

Councillor Kevin Collins, Executive Member for Planning and Regeneration at Central Bedfordshire Council, said:

We are absolutely delighted that we’ve been allocated our full bid.

Securing this advance funding for vital services and infrastructure demonstrates our commitment to planning for, and delivering, sustainable growth. During the Local Plan consultations, we heard loud and clear from the public that they want to have the right schools, facilities, health services and transport links in place ahead of the houses: that’s exactly what we’ve done here, and why we’ve worked so hard to secure this money.

Madeline Russell, Mayor of Biggleswade, said:

This funding secures much needed investment to respond to the housing and employment growth in Biggleswade.  We’re working in partnership with Central Bedfordshire Council to deliver the right solutions in the right places for our town.

We bid for this funding ahead of the housing being built in order to ensure essential infrastructure is in place ahead of town growth. When housing developer contributions later become available, we will then reinvest that extra money to continue to improve the Biggleswade area.