Gosport MP, Caroline Dinenage, has welcomed the news that the Governments Historic England are investing £1,776,500 into Gosport High Street as part of the High Streets Heritage Action Zone (HSHAZ) programme.
Caroline met with Historic England back in March this year where she discussed the vital investment that the High Street needed from the government.
The funding is aimed to help historic high streets recover after footfall has declined over the course of the pandemic. It will look to deliver schemes working with Historic England to transform and restore unused buildings into new spaces, whether it be shops, work places or community spaces.
Gosport High Street has already received over £75,000 from the Reopening High Streets Safely Fund through Gosport Borough Council. In September 2019, Caroline also thanked the Government as Gosport was 1 of the 69 high streets in England to benefit from the £95 million investment from the Heritage High Streets Fund and Future High Street Fund.
Caroline herself has been encouraging constituents to return to the high street as businesses reopen COVID-19 secure, not only to shop local, but to also nominate Gosport independent retailers for the UK Best Small Shops Competition.
“I am thrilled that Historic England have chosen to invest in Gosport High Street following our meeting earlier in the year.
“Our high street is at the very heart of our community, but has been hit hard by the pandemic and I know local businesses are feeling the toll.
“This funding will look to regenerate both our high street and our local economy, and I look forward to seeing the benefits it will bring.”
Emily Gee, London and South East Regional Director at Historic England, said:
“Gosport is not alone in the problems it faces on the high street with low footfall and high vacancy rates. But Gosport is home to many wonderful historic military and maritime buildings, and we are excited to working with the Council to transform and restore this important heritage into new homes, shops and community spaces, creating jobs and training opportunities in the process.
“Cultural activities will help to bring the high street back to life and we will be exploring how the Gosport Museum and Art Gallery might be renovated. We want to help create a welcoming and thriving place for local people and visitors to enjoy for years to come. With this funding, there is hope for a brighter future in Gosport thanks to its rich and interesting past.”