Falkirk Council has secured a £5.5 million investment which will see a major transformation of Falkirk Town Centre over the next five years.
The Council has been successful in achieving final sign off for a £2 million grant from the Heritage Lottery Fund towards a Townscape Heritage Initiative (THI) in the town centre. This is supported by a £1.6 million grant previously awarded to the Falkirk Town Centre Conservation area by Historic Scotland as part of their Conservation Area Regeneration Scheme.
The THI aims to regenerate Falkirk Town Centre by repairing, restoring and preserving the area’s heritage features and historic buildings, with a view to attracting more visitors, residents, services and retailers to the area. Falkirk Council and Falkirk Business Improvement District (Falkirk BID) are also financially supporting the initiative.
Councillor Dennis Goldie, Spokesperson for Economic Development at Falkirk Council commented: “This is fantastic news for Falkirk. It will give the town centre a well deserved boost and will in the longer term help to transform its fortunes by creating a shopping area where increasingly people want to spend their time and money.
“We are delighted to have the support of our new THI Project Officer, Susie Dibdin, who will assist with the promotion and delivery of the THI. Julia Branch as THI Heritage Engagement Officer will also be key in promoting and raising awareness of the significant heritage of Falkirk town centre within the Falkirk Community Trust, local history groups, schools, town centre users and the wider community.”
Colin McLean, Head of Heritage Lottery Fund in Scotland said: “Over the last decade the Heritage Lottery Fund has revitalised town centres across Scotland through our Townscape Heritage Initiative .Through Lottery players money new life has been injected into once derelict buildings in town centres across the country, with HLF grants encouraging new jobs and creating vibrant places where people once again want to shop, live, work and visit. Our funding is not just about rescuing historic buildings but is also about changing the perceptions of an area, providing a new optimism and sense of pride which can often act as a springboard for further investment. We are confident that this £5m project will deliver significant benefits to the people of Falkirk over the next five years by breathing new life into the historic centre of a community that people are proud to call home.”
Thomas Knowles of Historic Scotland said: “This is a great opportunity for Falkirk to rediscover its historic roots and celebrate its past by restoring and preserving the area’s unique heritage features and historic buildings. By doing so Falkirk Town Centre will be transformed; we know that people are attracted to and enjoy living, working and visiting historic, locally distinctive and well kept places.”