OLDHAM could receive a £25 million from a £3.6 billion "Towns Fund" from the government to boost the local economy.

Alongside Bolton, Rochdale and Cheadle, Oldham is among 100 across the UK to be earmarked to receive the cash.

The money in addition to £25 million Oldham was invited to bid for from the Future High Streets Fund, announced in July, aimed at making it "fit for the future".

The government says the towns have been allocated funding because they are "places with a proud industrial and economic heritage, which have not benefited from economic growth in the same way as more prosperous areas".

A total of 45 places covered by the so-called Northern Powerhouse region are among the new Town Deals.

Communities Secretary Robert Jenrick said: “Ensuring that prosperity and opportunities are available to everyone in this country, not just those in London or our biggest cities is central to the mission of this government.

“We want to level-up our great towns, raising living standards and ensuring they can thrive with transformative investment in infrastructure, technology, skills and culture.

“I will now work with local people from the 100 communities announced today to agree proposals to invest up to £25 million in each place. I hope these deals will provide the investment and the impetus for long-term renewal ensuring each place can look to the future with a new optimism.”

“With £130 million of government support from the Local Growth Fund, Greater Manchester has delivered an improved, better integrated transport network across the region and we want to see more projects like these which will help to build a prosperous, global United Kingdom and make the most of the historic opportunities Brexit brings.”

Minister for the Northern Powerhouse and Local Growth Jake Berry MP said: “We’re building on £663 million of Local Growth Funding and a devolution deal which gives the mayor control over £7 billion to give towns in Greater Manchester the support they need to be at the leading edge of a confident, global Britain.

“We’re leaving the European Union on October 31 and investing back into places like Oldham and Cheadle to ensure they can prosper as part of our determination to level up our regions and unite the country.

“In July, the Prime Minister promised to level up 100 places across the country, and today we’re delivering that promise in Greater Manchester.

“The best answers for local people will come from local people, that’s why we have listened to people living in these towns and will support them with a mega £3.6 billion fund to drive jobs and economic growth."

The announcement follows the Prime Minister’s announcement in July of an additional £1.325 billion to support towns as part of a renewed vision to level up our regions, which took the total value of the Towns Fund to £3.6 billion.

The government will soon publish a prospectus to guide towns through the process and set eligibility criteria for funding.

Once approved, new Town Deals will improve connectivity, provide vital social and cultural infrastructure and boost growth – with communities having a say on how the money is spent. Decisions on funding any proposals will be made in due course.

Notes to editors:

The first four places in Greater Manchester being supported to develop Town Deals are:

• Oldham

• Rochdale

• Bolton

• Cheadle.

The 100 places being supported to develop Town Deals are: https://www.gov.uk/government/news/100-places-to-benefit-from-new-towns-fund

On 27 July 2019 the Prime Minister announced that the £3.6 billion Towns Fund would support an initial 100 town deals across England. Further details of the announcement can be found here: https://www.gov.uk/government/speeches/pm-speech-at-manchester-science-and-industry-museum

This week the Chancellor announced £241 million of the Towns Fund is available to support places in 2020-21 in the Spending Round.

Today’s announcement comes ahead of a significant week for the Northern Powerhouse.

The Convention of the North and the NP11 group of Local Enterprise Partnership (LEPs), with support from Government, will bring together the North’s political, business, community and academic leaders in Rotherham on 13 September around a common agenda for the future of the North.

This will be the largest ever event of its kind. It will debate policy and make a powerful, unified case to the Prime Minister and Government for the Northern Powerhouse, putting it at the top of the economic agenda so it can fulfil its potentially transformational role in the future of the UK. More details can be found here: http://aymwc0.attendify.io/