Starting orders for slice of cash

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AN MP has called for a market town’s high street to be given more financial support.

Kirkham narrowly missed out on securing vital government funding as part of Mary Portas pilot scheme – which saw 12 towns given £100,000 – but now the town’s councillors want Fylde Council to stump up some cash.

The council has £100,000 of unexpected government funding to dole out to the borough’s high streets – and Kirkham’s bid for it has now been supported by local MP Mark Menzies.

Mr Menzies said: “This money was an unexpected and welcome windfall and, understandably, there will be many varying opinions about how it should be spent.

“However, I certainly think that Kirkham is a high street that could benefit a lot from some support.

“Ultimately it is a decision for councillors to take but I personally think sharing the money around in consultation with business groups is the fairest way to do things.”

The leader of the town’s business group, Coun Elaine Silverwood, put together the Portas Pilot bid in an effort to get the grant and advice from the Queen of Shops herself.

But – despite support from the University of Central Lancashire and Mr Menzies –they missed out when the first round of 12 lucky towns was revealed.

The town’s project will be automatically entered into the second round of Portas Pilot bidding later this year, but Coun Silverwood and fellow Kirkham councillor Liz Oades will both attend Fylde Council’s cabinet tomorrow to plead for the £100,000.

Cabinet members are due to discuss the funding and debate how, when and where it should be spent.

The meeting takes place in St Annes Town Hall tomorrow at 7pm.

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