Aug 05 2011

Harrow Council secures funding to revitalise shopping centres

Harrow Council has secured almost £860,000 of funding to work with businesses and the wider community on revitalising two of the borough’s shopping centres.

The money will pay for a comprehensive package of investment in Harrow Town Centre and North Harrow . A mix of promotions, festivals, events and on-street improvements aim to attract more visitors and shoppers to spend in the areas, while market research will help traders respond to demand.

The funding was secured through a successful Council bid to the Mayor of London’s Outer London Fund, Round One, a £10m pot of money for improving high streets across the capital.

In Harrow Town Centre, a winning bid of £496,000 will fund a programme of festivals between September and March 2012, including food, arts, culture and faith, to attract visitors and promote the area to a London audience. By increasing footfall, the festivals will encourage greater spending in local retailers and raise the profile of the shopping offer.

In North Harrow, the Council secured £360,400 to work with traders and the wider community on a range of marketing and promotional events, including a business directory and North Harrow web site. The Council will also look at ways of addressing other issues such as parking.

Cllr Keith Ferry, portfolio holder for planning and economic development on Harrow Council, said:

“Our shopping centres are at the heart of our communities and we have made it a Council priority to support them and help our traders compete. A combination of the economic downturn, internet shopping and the growth of out of town shopping are making it increasingly tough for our high streets.

“We can make a difference by working with businesses and the entire community to promote what’s on offer, make these areas more attractive and make sure they meet local demand.

“We worked hard to secure this additional funding for the borough and showing the work already underway in areas like North Harrow really helped clinch the deal.

“The money will be put to excellent use, working in partnership to create events and activities that will attract visitors, improving the look of the high streets, and helping traders to promote their businesses effectively.”

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