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Boris Johnson reveals Ramsgate and Dover to benefit from £1 billion fund to develop town centres

New funding to boost two town centres in Kent has been confirmed by Prime Minister Boris Johnson.

Ramsgate and Dover are among 50 towns across the UK to benefit from a £1 billion investment announced by the government at the weekend.

Harbour Street in Ramsgate
Harbour Street in Ramsgate

Both will receive up to £150,000 to draw up plans to reinvent high streets and the town centres under the Future High Streets Fund.

Dover's waterfront development and the town centre are included in the projects, while Ramsgate town centre has also been shortlisted.

The government says the funding will help councils come up with ideas about how to improve transport and access into town centres, convert empty retail units into homes and working space and investment in infrastructure.

Thanet District Council and Dover District Council are now set to consider proposals for their areas.

Cllr Reece Pugh, cabinet member for corporate governance and coastal development at Thanet, said: "We welcome the announcement from the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government and are delighted that Ramsgate is one of the 50 successful towns to be invited to put our application forward into the next phase of assessment of the Future High Streets fund.

"We want to develop a thriving and sustainable high street and having up to £150,000 to work up detailed project proposals, to be ready to bid for capital funds, is another step closer to achieving that goal.

"We would like to thank the Coastal Community Team, Ramsgate Town Team, Ramsgate Society and Ramsgate Town Council who share our positive vision for the area and helped shape the expression of interest for Ramsgate.

"This is a great opportunity to unlock the town’s potential for investment, transform the high street and support job creation."

South Thanet MP Craig Mackinlay says he is "delighted" by the announcement to develop plans to "keep the high street at the beating heart of the community".

He added: "We’re not there yet, but this is a significant step towards bringing new life into the high street."

Biggin Street, Dover
Biggin Street, Dover

The latest 50 towns added to the fund join another 50 areas in England already shortlisted to develop plans.

'We’re not there yet, but this is a significant step towards bringing new life into the high street,' Craig Mackinlay MP

The extension of the list follows a £3.6bn investment announced last month for the Towns Fund, which included an extra £325 million for the Future High Streets Fund project.

Prime minister Boris Johnson said: "Our high streets are right at the heart of our communities.

"I will do everything I can to make sure they remain vibrant places where people want to go, meet and spend their money."

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