Hartlepool Town Investment Plan
The Hartlepool Town Investment Plan was prepared as part of the first stage of the Ministry of Housing, Communities & Local Government’s (now the Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities) Town Deal programme. It was the key step towards securing multi-million-pound Towns Fund investment from the Government, setting out key project investments and a base for business cases.
We initially undertook a SWOT analysis to identify the town’s key assets, economic role and legacy challenges, building upon the work that had previously been prepared in the Economic Growth Plan Evaluation & Refresh 2019-2021.
Alongside identifying the economic challenges and barriers to growth facing the town, the SWOT analysis involved identifying key assets like Hartlepool BIS, The Northern School of Art, ABLE Seaton Port and Hartlepool Marina. The analysis also included defining the town’s current national and regional economic role and identifying strengths in sectors like advanced manufacturing and engineering, and key growth sectors like the visitor economy.
We also assessed recent stakeholder and community engagement to ensure that the analysis included the views and aspirations of local residents and businesses, and considered the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic on the town’s longstanding challenges.
This work culminated in identifying the key strapline for the Town Investment Plan in the ‘three things to change’:
- The jobs value gap;
- Social mobility and skills constraints; and
- The dysfunctional and disconnected central area.
Collectively, these represented an opportunity to reshape the town’s future by driving growth and better value for money; supporting skills development for a productive and creative town and planning the development of a compact and connected waterfront market town.
We also undertook a stakeholder engagement exercise to ensure that the proposals would have the support of the local community, with the data used to assess the views of residents and businesses. Any stakeholder concerns were noted and mitigating actions were developed before the Town Investment Plan was finalised.
These findings were used to create the vision for Hartlepool’s development over the next 20 years, as well as prioritising the key projects for Town Deal investments, with those most-aligned with the ‘three things to change’ taken forward for potential funding.
In June 2021, it was announced that Hartlepool would receive its full £25m allocation from the Towns Fund Deal fund. Cllr Shane Moore, Leader of Hartlepool Borough Council said:
“To get the full amount that we bid for is tremendous news and means that we are now able to press ahead with our ambitious plans.
“The Town Deal is a real game changer in terms of shaping the town’s future and its importance cannot be overstated. I’d like to thank everyone who has played a part in securing this money. Their hard work and commitment to the town is much appreciated.”
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