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£45.1 million plan to level up Weston Favell takes a step forward

Business, licensing and regeneration

01 July 2022

Design proposal showing the potential layout of the £45.1 million Weston Favell Community HubDesign proposal showing the potential layout of the £45.1 million Weston Favell Community Hub

Proposals for a swimming pool, cinema, library, and a new home for health and social services in Weston Favell have taken another big step forward after West Northamptonshire Council (WNC) committed to half the funding.

Last month WNC decided to push forward with plans to consolidate several outdated community buildings, including: Lings Forum leisure centre, Weston Favell health centre, Olympus House (adult services), the Forum (children’s services), Weston Favell Library and Weston Favell Police Station.

During the full council meeting on Thursday, 30 June, the Council said they would support the regeneration project with £25.1 million if successful in its application for £20 million from the Government’s £4.8 billion Levelling Up Fund (LUF).

Cllr Daniel Lister WNC’s Cabinet Member for economic development, town centre regeneration and growth said: “It is right the public money should be invested where it is most needed, and this area was laid out when ideas on design and planning were very different.

"It will be very far from a like for like replacement, this will deliver genuine improvements to the access and quality of vital public services and its impact will be felt throughout the community in the east of Northampton.

"Improving the look and feel of the area is just the start, better health facilities mean better outcomes and a higher quality of life for those who need the most help.

"It’s about time the people of Weston Favell and the surrounding area have something at the heart of their community that they can be proud of and will enjoy visiting."

The catchment area for the Hub includes 90,000 people. Extensive consultation and feasibility studies have already been undertaken which identified the facilities required within the new hub.

These facilities include:

  • Leisure centre with a new swimming pool, learner pool, gym, exercise studios, sports hall, changing rooms and ancillary accommodation
  • Library with quiet study areas, exhibition space, meetings rooms and staff areas
  • A two-screen cinema
  • Community hub with a lobby area, public seating, café, meeting and consultation rooms
  • Adult services with office space, activity rooms, sensory rooms, function space and ancillary accommodation
  • Children services with contact and family rooms, baby rooms, meetings and interview rooms, outdoor play area and ancillary accommodation
  • GP practices with access to additional clinical space and minor operations room
  • A dental practice
  • Opportunity for additional services such as maternity and physiotherapy services

Northampton has been ranked as the 105th most deprived area in the UK, putting it within the top third of the country.

The Talavera ward, which includes Weston Favell is considered in the top 20 per cent most deprived neighbourhoods in the country and the nearby ward of Riverside is in the top 10 per cent of most deprived neighbourhoods in the country.

Weston Favell is just one of several projects chosen for LUF applications as they were already underway and at a stage where there was enough detail required for a successful application.

Other areas in need within Northampton are earmarked for future funding applications.

WNC's financial backing for the proposals will be submitted alongside the LUF application next month with a decision from the Government expected late 2022.