We have been hearing about ‘levelling up’ from our government for the past few years without really understanding what it is.
It has now been revealed that ‘levelling up’ is merely the 2020s manifestation of the urban generation drive of the 1990s after Margaret Thatcher’s 1998 discovery that the inner cities were decaying and old manufacturing industries were dying.
As in the 1980s it was manufacturing today it is the High Street that is in crisis. According to the publication of the Levelling Up White Paper by Michael Gove secretary of state at the Department for Levelling Up, Housing & Communities (DLUHC). “Derelict sites in towns and city centres will be transformed creating new homes, jobs and beautiful new communities across England”.
Wolverhampton and Sheffield will be the first of 20 places that will get some state aid for urban regeneration projects – from the £1.5.bn Brownfield Fund announced by the Treasury in the last budget statement.
Homes England are expected to do all the work on this one.
“The regeneration programme will be spearheaded by the government’s housing delivery agency Homes England, which will be refocused and tasked to support the Levelling Up agenda. It will use its extensive powers and expertise to help local leaders deliver the regeneration of large areas of towns and cities, as they adapt to economic trends like the rise of online shopping”.
Michael Gove said: “We are on a mission to regenerate the nation, transforming derelict areas in our towns and cities into thriving places people are proud to work and live in. We are refocusing Homes England and empowering local leaders to support levelling up, delivering Kings Cross style transformatonal regeneration projects across the country – starting in Wolverhampton and Sheffield. This huge investment in infrastructure and regeneration will spread opportunity more evenly and help to reverse the geographical inequalities which still exist in the UK”.