High streets and town centres across the UK are getting a substantial boost to their economy. £830 million from the Future High Streets Fund will be invested into 72 areas to drive long-term growth, protect historic assets, and help aid economic recovery from Covid-19.

Last month, £21 million was awarded to Tamworth, and as part of a multi-disciplinary team led by Aspinall Verdi, Purcell are developing a masterplan across its town centre to revitalise how its local communities and visitors experience the town.

Throughout time, the steady erosion of the physical and visual connections between Tamworth and its rich historic fabric has lost the fabric’s continuity, leaving only the historic landmarks of the Norman Castle, the Town Hall and St Editha’s Church.

Purcell's masterplan will develop key sites which are not currently contributing to its culture, and Tamworth’s economy. In doing so, the project will improve the visual and physical connectivity between the primary heritage assets in the town centre.

The Future High Streets Fund investment aims to deliver a significant improvement to the local economy while enabling Tamworth’s communities to increasingly enjoy their historic environment. The funding will also help create thousands of jobs across diverse industries, delivering new opportunities to local communities across the UK.

Alasdair Travers, Head of Design

The investment will see the Staffordshire town’s high street transformed — diversifying from retail to other sectors (such as residential), while protecting its rich heritage and utilising underused space.

The project will also repair and refurbish five historic shops on the Market Square, bringing these buildings back into active use. Improving the visual and physical connectivity between the castle grounds and the Market Square will stimulate opportunities for future development and positive change.

Securing this funding is amazing news for Tamworth and will enable us to make long-lasting structural changes which recognise the evolving role of town centres as places for enterprise, leisure and living, as well as retail. Together these projects will raise skills and innovation, remove vacant retail floor space, boost the local economy, unlock opportunities for the community and further investment and provide a lasting legacy for the future of the town centre.

Daniel Cook, Leader of Tamworth Borough Council, Cllr