£2m bid to revive Bacup's fortunes

Lancashire Telegraph: Bacup town centre Bacup town centre

ALMOST 60 buildings could be transformed, and 90 students and apprentices given training, or job opportunities, if a £2million initiative to revive Bacup’s fortunes is realised.

Supporters of the Townscape Heritage Initiative for Bacup will submit their full bid to the Heritage Lottery Fund in July.

But their initial plans already show a far-reaching project, designed to turn the struggling valley town into the next Ramsbottom, or Hebden Bridge.

Economic development manager David Presto said on the bid form: “We have an opportunity to make a massive difference to Bacup and its 15,000 residents through this THI scheme and complementary initiatives, to which the council has already committed.

“Bacup is small enough for this initiative to be transformational, so breaking the negative economic cycle, and putting the town on a path to a much better future.”

The work would build on previous attempts to promote Bacup’s historic aspect, including European funding which was used to create a history trail, and English Heritage’s efforts to preserve Victorian property in Yorkshire Street.

A similar initiative in Darwen, launched in 2006, saw 25 historic buildings renovated, and work is still ongoing, also under the THI programme, to regenerate Burnley’s Weaver’s Triangle district.

In Bacup, one of the focuses will be the town’s Union Square market, where specialist sales covering the arts and rural produce will be considered. Proposals will also be drawn up for a bandstand.

Traders in the town centre conservation area will also be encouraged to ditch unsympathetic shutters and satelite dishes, and improve signage.

One success story in the town centre has already been the private redevelopment of the Pioneer Buildings, in Rochdale Road, which are now home to a range of shops, Dansworks Academy, and the town’s Conservative Club.

Mr Presto said that 20 students should receive work placements during the course of the THI scheme, and six local contractors would receive professional development training.

Another 40 are expected to receive work experience through valley firms, and 30 volunteers, recommended through Accrington and Rossendale College, would also benefit from on-the-job training.

It is hoped that around 1,000 people will be reached through a series of taster days, outreach programmes, and workshops, while the THI project is ongoing.

Comments (7)

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6:47pm Mon 11 Feb 13

bridgey2000 says...

Fantastic initiative - about time that other Valley towns other than Rawtenstall got some money and attention. I fear that Bacup and Haslingden will be nothing in a few years time, compared to what they were 20 or even 10 years ago. Haslingden especially has become a mix of Asian food retailers and take away food outlets, with the odd specialist quality retailer. Even the banks have shunned it, with NatWest closing last year and HSBC closing a few years ago - Barclays announced it's intention to close a year or so ago and I guess that will happen once the improvements have been made at the Rawtenstall branch. Shame, cos Backup and Haslingden were cracking proper market towns not too long ago.
Fantastic initiative - about time that other Valley towns other than Rawtenstall got some money and attention. I fear that Bacup and Haslingden will be nothing in a few years time, compared to what they were 20 or even 10 years ago. Haslingden especially has become a mix of Asian food retailers and take away food outlets, with the odd specialist quality retailer. Even the banks have shunned it, with NatWest closing last year and HSBC closing a few years ago - Barclays announced it's intention to close a year or so ago and I guess that will happen once the improvements have been made at the Rawtenstall branch. Shame, cos Backup and Haslingden were cracking proper market towns not too long ago. bridgey2000

7:02pm Mon 11 Feb 13

icannotrace says...

Anything to try and revive Bacup's fortunes should be supported although I don't think you will see much for 2m. It would need proper investment to have a chance to make a difference.
Anything to try and revive Bacup's fortunes should be supported although I don't think you will see much for 2m. It would need proper investment to have a chance to make a difference. icannotrace

9:06pm Mon 11 Feb 13

nmclean77 says...

I believe that the introduction of a Morrison's supermarket to the town will improve the towns fortunes. As things stand, residents leave Bacup to go to other nearby local towns for food shopping due to the high prices charged by the Co-op, and no doubt when they go to these towns, they visit other retailers in the local towns. So, when Morrison's arrives, people will have a competitively priced food retailer, so there'll be no need to leave town, keeping more money in the local town and hopefully allowing it to grow and flourish - there is no reason why Bacup cannot become another Ramsbottom, Hebden Bridge or Todmorden with the right support.
I believe that the introduction of a Morrison's supermarket to the town will improve the towns fortunes. As things stand, residents leave Bacup to go to other nearby local towns for food shopping due to the high prices charged by the Co-op, and no doubt when they go to these towns, they visit other retailers in the local towns. So, when Morrison's arrives, people will have a competitively priced food retailer, so there'll be no need to leave town, keeping more money in the local town and hopefully allowing it to grow and flourish - there is no reason why Bacup cannot become another Ramsbottom, Hebden Bridge or Todmorden with the right support. nmclean77

1:26am Tue 12 Feb 13

bunnyboiled says...

I agree with 'icannotrace' 2m is a lot to an individual. But a lot will get skimmed of in "professional advisory fees" etc. so that 2m will turn into little more than 500k in actual improvement work.
I agree with 'icannotrace' 2m is a lot to an individual. But a lot will get skimmed of in "professional advisory fees" etc. so that 2m will turn into little more than 500k in actual improvement work. bunnyboiled

8:33pm Wed 13 Feb 13

nmclean77 says...

I've been in the Cotswolds, and all villages and towns have all of their shops looking the same, even the chain stores - they all have traditional name boards, traditional hanging signs and the same colours, usually a grey or pale green. They look very attractive and give a warming feeling which attracts people AND encourages people to spend money.

If the money was spent properly, and by that I mean actually on improvements, not consultation fees, then the town would be transformed and people would be curious to visit.
I've been in the Cotswolds, and all villages and towns have all of their shops looking the same, even the chain stores - they all have traditional name boards, traditional hanging signs and the same colours, usually a grey or pale green. They look very attractive and give a warming feeling which attracts people AND encourages people to spend money. If the money was spent properly, and by that I mean actually on improvements, not consultation fees, then the town would be transformed and people would be curious to visit. nmclean77

1:15pm Sun 17 Feb 13

john Kenny says...

bridgey2000 wrote:
Fantastic initiative - about time that other Valley towns other than Rawtenstall got some money and attention. I fear that Bacup and Haslingden will be nothing in a few years time, compared to what they were 20 or even 10 years ago. Haslingden especially has become a mix of Asian food retailers and take away food outlets, with the odd specialist quality retailer. Even the banks have shunned it, with NatWest closing last year and HSBC closing a few years ago - Barclays announced it's intention to close a year or so ago and I guess that will happen once the improvements have been made at the Rawtenstall branch. Shame, cos Backup and Haslingden were cracking proper market towns not too long ago.
hi there i grew up in Bacup and it was a beautiful small Town with lots of shops and everyone seemed to have a job. But now all the factories have closed and so have all the shops as a Child the first shop that i remember closing down was Redmans the Cellar 5 moved into the premises later and i believe that has since closed down i remember Freeman Hardy and Willis i used to buy all of my shoes from there that closed in 1984 Woolworth's closed in 1986 i left Bacup in 1988 and when i returned on holiday a few years later i couldn't believe how the town had gone it was a ghost of its former self every shop i knew as a child had gone except for Boots and mannings the gas and Electric Showrooms were gone Boardman's furniture shop had gone the same way and so had Greenwoods Menswear the public baths had closed i haven't been back in Bacup in years i still miss the place and my old mates i just hope that something can be done to bring Bacup back to what it was 50 years ago from john
[quote][p][bold]bridgey2000[/bold] wrote: Fantastic initiative - about time that other Valley towns other than Rawtenstall got some money and attention. I fear that Bacup and Haslingden will be nothing in a few years time, compared to what they were 20 or even 10 years ago. Haslingden especially has become a mix of Asian food retailers and take away food outlets, with the odd specialist quality retailer. Even the banks have shunned it, with NatWest closing last year and HSBC closing a few years ago - Barclays announced it's intention to close a year or so ago and I guess that will happen once the improvements have been made at the Rawtenstall branch. Shame, cos Backup and Haslingden were cracking proper market towns not too long ago.[/p][/quote]hi there i grew up in Bacup and it was a beautiful small Town with lots of shops and everyone seemed to have a job. But now all the factories have closed and so have all the shops as a Child the first shop that i remember closing down was Redmans the Cellar 5 moved into the premises later and i believe that has since closed down i remember Freeman Hardy and Willis i used to buy all of my shoes from there that closed in 1984 Woolworth's closed in 1986 i left Bacup in 1988 and when i returned on holiday a few years later i couldn't believe how the town had gone it was a ghost of its former self every shop i knew as a child had gone except for Boots and mannings the gas and Electric Showrooms were gone Boardman's furniture shop had gone the same way and so had Greenwoods Menswear the public baths had closed i haven't been back in Bacup in years i still miss the place and my old mates i just hope that something can be done to bring Bacup back to what it was 50 years ago from john john Kenny

10:54pm Wed 27 Feb 13

mysay.com says...

Hi all, just to clarify, the bid is for £2 million funding for improvements, 25% of which must be met by council matchfunding in order for it to be a successful bid.
It must also be put together and supported by input from representative groups from local traders residents and heritage groups etc in order for it to be a success.
this means that the decisions as to what to do with this money will not be made by authorities, or "paid towards" anything other than the details within the bid, which has been put together by the groups.
get involved, come to the meetings and have your say.
this matchfunding has been put in place ready and will be used for renovation works and or improvements whoudl the bid be unsuccessful.
the funding will NOT be used for "extra" in any way, it will ONLY be used to pay for the works to be carried out.
hope this clears things up a little.
Hi all, just to clarify, the bid is for £2 million funding for improvements, 25% of which must be met by council matchfunding in order for it to be a successful bid. It must also be put together and supported by input from representative groups from local traders residents and heritage groups etc in order for it to be a success. this means that the decisions as to what to do with this money will not be made by authorities, or "paid towards" anything other than the details within the bid, which has been put together by the groups. get involved, come to the meetings and have your say. this matchfunding has been put in place ready and will be used for renovation works and or improvements whoudl the bid be unsuccessful. the funding will NOT be used for "extra" in any way, it will ONLY be used to pay for the works to be carried out. hope this clears things up a little. mysay.com

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