Bright Future for Lincolnshire’s past; Boston Town Deal Update

Bright future for Lincolnshire’s past as Heritage Lincolnshire get the green light to deliver a multi-million pound Town Centre Transformation Scheme in Boston

Heritage Lincolnshire, the county’s foremost charity dedicated to conserving Lincolnshire’s heritage from the Humber to the Wash, is celebrating securing approval for a £3.9m funding boost for Boston’s town centre, courtesy of the Boston Town Deal Board and the Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities.

This exciting project, ‘Healing the High Street: Boston’, will build on Heritage Lincolnshire’s successful existing Townscape Heritage grant scheme (funded by the National Heritage Lottery Fund) and will result in a substantial pot of grant funding being made available to local businesses and property owners in Boston Town Centre, including (but not limited to) the Market Place, Strait Bargate and Wide Bargate. This will focus on transforming town centre properties through grants to repair and revitalise historic buildings and shopfronts. The project will focus on Boston’s diverse and valuable historic environment, as well as newer and prominent buildings in the town centre. It is also expected that this funding will be used to leverage wider investment into the town of Boston, with the aim of substantially improving the living, working and shopping environment for residents, visitors and businesses alike.

Minister for Levelling Up Neil O’Brien MP said: ‘This £3.9 million boost as part of Boston’s £21.9 million Town Deal is revitalising the look and feel of their town centre, supporting local businesses making this town an even more desirable place to live, work and visit.’

‘We are levelling up communities like Boston up and down the country, driving growth, improving living conditions and helping communities build back better from the pandemic.’

Greg Pickup, Chief Executive of Heritage Lincolnshire, said “this unparalleled investment in Boston’s heritage demonstrates that Lincolnshire’s rich history can and should be at the forefront of future growth in our county. I am delighted to see that the Town Deal proposal for Boston recognises the need to support our struggling town centres and high streets, which are crucial to the country’s recovery from Covid and its future growth. I am enormously proud of the hard work of my team, whose efforts alongside that of a broad partnership, including Boston Borough Council, have helped secure a frankly staggering sum for heritage in Boston. This once-in-a-generation investment truly will transform the town centre and ensure that Boston’s heritage assets are fit for the future and available to all’.

Lydia Rusling, Assistant Director, commented “Heritage Lincolnshire played a key part in making sure our Town Deal bids really stood out; we recognise that we can’t hope to improve the fortunes of our towns without supporting our town centres and their unique heritage. We are excited to continue our work with Heritage Lincolnshire to deliver these proposals and to support local businesses in the regeneration of Boston Town Centre”

Neil Kempster, Chair of the Town Board, stated “The Town Deal aims to build on the unique and historic nature of Boston to help deliver a better future for everyone. The Healing the High Street project is a key component of our plan and is already helping to deliver important change and improvements to key parts of the town. It is an excellent scheme which provides evidence to the local community of the benefits of the Town Deal, as well as opportunities to local businesses to benefit from the investment being made in the area. It can make a real difference to the regeneration of the Town Centre and we look forward to working with Heritage Lincolnshire on this exciting project.”

Charlotte Goy, Chief Executive of the Lincolnshire tourism Destination Management Organisation Visit Lincoln, said “residents and visitors really value the rich history and heritage of Boston. It also has international appeal and is a key destination in the county’s tourism offering. This investment is a welcome boost, and it is exciting to see Heritage Lincolnshire continue their excellent work in Boston. The funding will make a real difference, stimulating more inward investment over the years to come. But more importantly, I think it will generate civic pride as business owners and residents see Heritage Lincolnshire giving the gems across Boston their TLC. The next few years are going to be very exciting, and I look forward to support Heritage Lincolnshire’s work”

Michael Ashton, Chair of Heritage Lincolnshire’s Trustee Board, concluded “This investment undoubtedly represents one of the most significant investments in Heritage Lincolnshire projects in our 30-year history. It genuinely will transform and bring back to life historic buildings in Boston Town Centre and will substantially benefit the wider borough. We’re excited to be working with organisations across Boston and more widely, across Lincolnshire, on this project and can’t wait to get started”.

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