Central Bedfordshire Council news and press releases

Shared Prosperity Fund to help create a prosperous Central Bedfordshire

Thursday, 14 April 2022

We've been allocated £4.9 million from the government to help local communities grow and thrive.

We'll receive £3.5 million from the UK Shared Prosperity Fund which is designed to build pride in where people live and increase life chances across the UK. The funding will support local people to gain high-quality skills, important training and ultimately rewarding jobs by investing in targeted local initiatives which promote employment opportunities, innovation and productivity.

The funding will help address challenges faced in town centres and communities in Central Bedfordshire. It will enable us to identify and fund improvements in places where people live and support individuals and businesses. The intention is to enhance the things that matter most to local communities, foster local pride and offer opportunities to all.

We've also been notified of an indicative allocation of £1.4 million from the government’s Multiply programme, to support adults to improve their numeracy skills. This will enable us to invest in appropriate courses for more residents to make real progress in their lives and get good, well-paid jobs.

Find out more about how we're planning to invest in our area.

Councillor Kevin Collins, our Executive Member for Planning and Regeneration, said:

We welcome the news and the allocation of this significant funding to help us support our local communities.

There are clear synergies between the objectives of the Shared Prosperity Fund and our Strategic Plan priorities. We aim to continue to drive our economy forward at speed, create rewarding opportunities for all our residents and most importantly make them proud of where they live and what Central Bedfordshire has to offer. This funding will help us achieve these goals.

We look forward to working with our local communities, business and residents to identify how we can best use this funding to enable local people to live their best lives, both now and in the future. We are determined to create opportunities for all people in all parts of Central Bedfordshire.

The next step for us is to submit investment plans, which will need to be approved by the government, focusing on creating a sense of local pride, creating jobs, boosting core skills, and supporting people to work.

The UK Shared Prosperity Fund was launched by the government in early 2022 and is central to its ‘levelling up’ agenda, with £2.6 billion of funding set aside for local investment by March 2025.