Moray MP Douglas Ross and Moray Council leader Kathleen Robertson say it is “fantastic news” that Elgin is set to benefit from £20million worth of funding from the UK Government over the next decade.
The announcement – which has been made at the start of the UK Conservative Party Conference – forms part of the UK Government’s Levelling Up Agenda.
It will see seven Scottish towns – including Elgin – receive £20million each as part of the UK Government’s Long-Term Plan for Towns.
The UK Government’s plan will see the £20million endowment-style fund directly paid to Moray Council which will be spent on Elgin’s priorities including regenerating the town centre and keeping the local community safe as well as improving local transport links and growing the local economy.
A Town Board will also be set up that will bring together community leaders – including Douglas as the local MP, the local authority, cultural and sporting organisations, public sector agencies and local businesses who will engage with the local community in Elgin to develop a long-term plan for the town.
Douglas Ross says this is further evidence of the UK Government empowering local communities like Elgin and trusting them to make the right decisions to improve the communities in which they live.
He says that the money is a “huge boost” for Elgin during these tough economic times and says he is looking forward to engaging with relevant stakeholders to ensure the funding from the UK Government is delivered to those who need it most and delivers a bright future for Elgin.
Douglas Ross added that he hopes the SNP-Green government will work closely with the UK Government and Moray Council in relation to this funding, rather than playing any “political games” over it.
Council leader Kathleen Robertson – who is also standing to be the MP for the newly created Moray West, Nairn and Strathspey constituency – which includes Elgin – at the next UK General Election says it is “wonderful” that Elgin will be able to invest so much in tackling the issues facing them.
Prime Minister Rishi Sunak says the UK Government’s long-term plan for towns “puts funding in the hands of local people themselves to invest in line with their priorities, over the long-term.”
Moray MP Douglas Ross said: “It is absolutely fantastic that the UK Government has selected Elgin to be one of the towns in Scotland to receive this major injection of funding over the next decade.
“This is further evidence of how the UK Government are fully committed to levelling up all parts of our country, including right here in Moray.
“Tackling the decline of our towns – and town centres – has to be a top priority if we are to encourage people to come to Moray and make this their home and place of work.
“By giving this funding directly to Moray Council, the UK Government are putting decisions in the hands of local people and ensuring decisions can be taken on their real priorities. That means money can be spent on regenerating Elgin high street, improving local transport links and growing the local economy.
“While this funding is for Elgin, I hope the investment means the council now has money it can direct to priorities elsewhere in Moray so the whole area can benefit from the additional £20 million.
“The funding is a huge boost during these tough economic times for Elgin and Moray as a whole and I am looking forward to engaging with relevant stakeholders to ensure this money is delivered to who needs it most.
“That includes the SNP-Green government who I hope will work closely with the UK Government and Moray Council rather than play their typical political games over this funding.
“The UK Government’s Long-Term Plan for Towns can deliver tangible long-term benefits for places like Elgin and I am delighted this funding has been made available to the local authority.
Moray Council leader and General Election candidate Kathleen Robertson said: “It is wonderful that the UK Government are directly investing in Elgin at the heart of Moray and allowing local leaders to decide where to spend their money.
“That means millions can be spent in the coming years on what matters to folk living here and who will reap the rewards of the UK Government’s funding.
“As a local council leader and local councillor, I know how challenging times are for our towns right now and we must be bold in how we deliver a positive future for people, businesses and organisations in Elgin and across our region, and this funding from the UK Government will help to do just that.
“I will work closely with stakeholders across Elgin and look forward to hearing a whole host of ideas from local people about where this money should be spent.”
Prime Minister Rishi Sunak said: “Towns are the place most of us call home and where most of us go to work.
“Our Long-Term Plan for Towns puts funding in the hands of local people themselves to invest in line with their priorities, over the long-term. That is how we level up.”