£20million of major investment has been awarded to help transform health and wellbeing in South Holland, after the District Council secured Government Levelling Up funding for the Castle Sports Complex site in Spalding.
After submitting a bid in August, the Government has this week confirmed the success of the application, which will look to create a new and improved offer focused around health, wellbeing, leisure, sport, recreation and community spaces.
The ambitious plans the Council submitted included proposals for a new 3G floodlit football pitch to allow play all year round, a changing pavilion, a multi-use games area for a variety of other sports and three new swimming pool facilities including a large pool, a teaching pool and a splash pad.
The bid also sought funding to provide community rooms and space dedicated for use to provide a health and wellbeing hub including services for mental health, diabetes, Alzheimer's and dementia support, as well as an Extra Care housing scheme for the District's older residents.
The Levelling Up Fund is specifically designed to secure capital investment in infrastructure that has the potential to improve lives and give people pride in their communities. The fund being one component of the Government 'Levelling Up' ambition.
The District Council worked closely with a number of partners on the submission, to ensure that as many residents and community groups would be able to benefit from the project. The submission also received support from Sir John Hayes, MP for South Holland and The Deepings, who formally sponsored the bid and helped to make the case for it to the Government.
With funding secured, the next steps will now begin to get the project planned and underway, with such a major piece of work expected to take several years to complete due to the scale and complexities of the proposal for the site.
Councillor Nick Worth said: "The success of this bid is a momentous moment for the whole of South Holland, and provides vital funding that will be truly transformational for helping to improve the lives of our residents.
"This was a highly competitive process, with over 500 bids submitted across the country, and is recognition of a District punching above its weight. We have a forward-thinking proposal that can provide enormous benefits for people of all ages, backgrounds and interests, and that will enhance and diversify the services and activities on offer in Spalding town centre.
"Thank you to everyone who has helped to support and form the bid. I am delighted that the Government has recognised the hard work, thought and collaboration that has gone into it, and now cannot wait to start the process of making these plans a reality."
Sir John Hayes MP also celebrated the announcement, saying: "Bringing such significant funding to South Holland is fantastic news for the District, which can help to make a real, positive difference for residents for many years to come."
"An enormous amount of work went into the excellent bid that won the day. Local understanding and the strong case for why Spalding was deserving made our unique case a success when pitched against hundreds of other worthy submissions. I was pleased and proud to play my part in that work. The decision to make this substantial investment and to help remodel and improve our local service provision is a major and welcome statement of support from the Government that will benefit my constituents in so many ways."
He added: "This is a victory for Spalding and South Holland and demonstrates what can be achieved when an MP and the local council work seamlessly for the good of their residents."
The Government is supporting all the LUF projects put forward by the whole of the South & East Lincolnshire Councils Partnership with £14.8m awarded to Boston Borough Council and £8m in East Lindsey. Each scheme will see projects which will be transformational for each district for generations, through job creation, new opportunities, driving inward investment and supporting the health and wellbeing of residents.