Capital’s high streets celebrate £175m investment
City Hall has announced plans to celebrate the capital’s high streets this summer and to continue a major focus on improvements that has already seen millions of pounds invested on schemes to rejuvenate some of London’s most important localities.
Today (24 June) the Deputy Mayor of London for Business and Enterprise, Kit Malthouse, visited Kingston to officially open a three million pound refurbishment of Kingston’s Ancient Market and kick-start the ‘Summer of High Streets’, a three month celebration of London’s most vibrant places. He also launched the Mayor’s High Street Award, part of the Great British High Streets Awards, which will recognise the great strides being made on the capital’s high streets and particularly the incredible diversity of services they provide to their local communities.
Deputy Mayor of London for business and enterprise, Kit Malthouse, said: “Today is the beginning of a sensational ‘summer of high streets’ where we will celebrate the competition of some fantastic regeneration projects in 50 high streets right across the capital. This investment is protecting unique businesses, revitalising our wonderful shopping districts, safeguarding jobs and creating new employment all over London.”
The Summer of High Streets will celebrate £175m of investment on schemes to improve 50 of the capital’s high streets. Many of those projects will be completed over the summer and an exciting programme of ‘Summer of High Streets’ events, which will include street markets, pop-up cinemas, fashion shows, dance live music and food festivals, is planned for every corner of the capital. When the Mayor’s current high street investment programme is complete it is expected to have:
- Supported 2,200 businesses
- Created 1,400 new jobs and secured 1,500 existing jobs
- Delivered 220 apprenticeships and supported 430 people into new jobs
- Made improvements to the high street frontage of 580 businesses
- Brought 60 high street units back into use
- Made improvements including providing new paving, new street furniture, planting more trees, providing new lighting and improved access for pedestrians and cyclists at 50 locations around the capital.
The Mayor’s High Street Award will recognise high streets that have been made more attractive and accessible, more resilient, and enabled to grow.
Later in the summer, the Mayor of London is expected to set out a long-term plan for continuing the programme of improvements to the capital’s high streets. The ‘Mayor’s Action for High Streets’ , to be published in July, will set out the Mayor’s position on high streets, including new research and ideas for how to spend a further £9m of grant funding.
In Kingston funding has been used to help enhance the heritage and cultural attractions of the area. The Ancient Market has been fully refurbished and striking new market stalls have been provided. A new festival of public art performances by young people will be taking place and extra support is being provided to help local entrepreneurs and pop up businesses become permanent fixtures. Over 200 young people have also received business support or training.