Carriage Works redevelopment gets £4m boost

By Barrie Hudson - 4 August 2020

CommunityBusiness

A £4m share of the Government's Getting Building Fund will be used in the refurbishment of Swindon's Grade II Listed Carriage Works.

  • Robert Buckland says the investment is part of the Government's plan to revitalise the economy in the wake of coronavirus

    Robert Buckland says the investment is part of the Government's plan to revitalise the economy in the wake of coronavirus

The money has been allocated to South Swindon from the £900m fund, which Prime Minister Boris Johnson announced in June as part of the Government’s New Deal for Britain – an economic strategy to rebuild Britain after coronavirus by putting skills and infrastructure investment at the heart of economic recovery. 

More than 300 projects, which have been determined as ‘shovel-ready', have been allocated shares. In total, the investment is expected to deliver up to 45,000 homes, create up to 85,000 jobs and reduce around 65 million kg of carbon dioxide emissions across England. 

South Swindon MP Robert Buckland said: “As we kickstart the economy and begin to recover from coronavirus, never has the Conservatives’ agenda to level up the whole country been so important.

“That’s why I am delighted South Swindon will directly benefit from this Government money – helping to build the infrastructure our community needs while supporting jobs over the months and years ahead.

“The Great Western Works were at the heart of Victorian innovation here in Swindon, so to be able to use these great buildings as a base for Swindon’s up and coming firms is something I’m sure Brunel himself would have approved of.

“Through important funds such as this, we can build our way back to health – with our communities stronger, more united and more connected than ever before.”

The redevelopment of the Carriage Works builds on the council’s stated commitment to finding sustainable uses for its heritage sites. 

It is supported by the Heritage Action Zone, which is bringing expertise from Historic England in order to deliver improvements throughout the Railway Village, where the Carriage Works is located.

The first phase of the redevelopment of the Carriage Works took place in 2018 with the opening of the WorkShed, a new office space for small businesses.

Last year, the Royal Agricultural University announced plans for a new postgraduate and professional training hub in Swindon to increase the number of trained professionals within the cultural heritage industries.

Despite the coronavirus pandemic, work has continued over the past few months and, if all goes to plan, the Cultural Heritage Institute will be open in September

The funding, Mr Buckland said, built on the commitments made by Boris Johnson and the Conservatives during last year’s General Election to level up the whole country, investing in infrastructure and communities across the whole country.

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