6 July 2020
Cheshire East Council has been offered up to £339,533 from the England European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) to support the safe reopening of its high streets. As shops, restaurants, cafes and bars begin to reopen the council is working to prepare the borough’s high streets for more visitors returning.
Temporary highways measures, including road closures and Covid19 social distancing signage has been in place across 16 high streets since Monday 15 June. Many have been adapted following more recent changes to national guidelines on social distancing. These measures will also now sit alongside friendly ‘Welcome Back – We’ve missed you’ campaign material consisting of rainbow banners, signage and bunting which will be displayed in 11 high streets over the coming week. The council’s preparations have had the much-appreciated support of Town and Parish Councils who are working collaboratively with the council to make their high streets more welcoming.
Cllr Laura Crane Cabinet Member for Highways and Waste said: “The council has installed a number of temporary highway measures around our high streets to enable people to adhere to social distancing requirements and return to our town centres safely.
“We would like to again reiterate our thanks to the town and parish councils who have informed the temporary measures that have been put in place to make our high streets safe.
“Following the weekend – which saw the government’s social distancing restrictions ease – we must remember that some members of our community are not as confident as others.
“Some people may be coming to the shops for the first time in over 100 days. These temporary measures in place are there to help build both their confidence and that of our businesses.”
Cllr Nick Mannion, Cabinet Member for Environment and Regeneration said: “We are continuing to listen to feedback about the temporary highway measures and are looking to find ways to support our high streets and businesses into recovery.
“The ‘Welcome back – We’ve missed you’ campaign is designed with our business and visitors at the heart of it and aims to make a more welcoming atmosphere in our towns.
“The pandemic has deeply affected our communities and local economy and we would encourage everyone who feels confident to do so, to shop locally and support your local high street at this difficult time.”
The latest temporary highway measures for each high street can be seen on the council’s website at www.cheshireeast.gov.uk/council_information/coronavirus/high-street-social-distancing-measures.aspx
Notes to editors
European Regional Development Fund
Up to £339,533 of funding from the England European Regional Development Fund as part of the European Structural and Investment Funds Growth Programme 2014-2020 is to be made available to the Council for projects aimed at reopening high streets safely. The Department for Communities and Local Government (and in London the intermediate body Greater London Authority) is the Managing Authority for European Regional Development Fund.
Established by the European Union, the European Regional Development Fund helps local areas stimulate their economic development by investing in projects which will support innovation, businesses, create jobs and local community regenerations. For more information visit https://www.gov.uk/european-growth-funding.