Grant scheme could mean makeover for Louth shop fronts

By Grimsby Telegraph | Posted: 11 Jun 2018

BUSINESSES in Louth could benefit from East Lindsey District Council’s new shop front grant scheme, which is set to launch in July.

The Council agreed £120,000 of funding to the scheme in its 2018/19 budget and it has now agreed the criteria for applications. 

The Council has previously run two Shop Front Grant Schemes, the most recent of which awarded over £45,000 to 24 successful applicants across the district.

To be eligible to apply, applicants must be based in one of the following eight town centres: Alford, Coningsby, Horncastle, Louth, Mablethorpe, Skegness, Spilsby or Sutton on Sea.

Applications are restricted to independent premises only. 

Priority will also be given to installation of traditional shop fronts, in order to restore the character of a building.

Under the new scheme, applicants will be able to bid for between £3,000 and £10,000 with the Council paying up to 60 per cent of total costs for the reinstatement of historic architectural details and historic features.

Many shops on Mercer Row have historically interesting features.

It is hoped that the larger maximum grant amount will lead to more significant investment in premises and, therefore, a greater impact on the look of the high street.

 Portfolio holder for Coastal Economy, Councillor Steve Kirk, said: “I’m delighted to see the Council approve the new criteria for the Shop Front Grant Scheme.

“Our most recent scheme was hugely positive for the district and allowed some of our businesses to improve and future-proof their shop frontage.”

Portfolio holder for Market Towns and the Rural Economy, Councillor Adam Grist, said: “This a massively positive step that will allow us to help directly improve the high street in a number of our towns and hopefully make the town more appealing for shoppers and visitors.

“We are acutely aware that independent retailers are facing challenges times but by working with businesses and making this investment we hope it’ll encourage more people to shop locally and support our business community.”

In July, the council will consider the introduction of a manufacturing growth incentive scheme for manufacturing businesses looking to grow in the district.

The Scheme would offer the businesses a discretionary refund on the business rates payable on the additional floor space they’re looking to create. If approved, applications will be judged on various factors including the size of new premises, employment opportunities and overall economic impact.

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