Council admits ‘funding limits’ for Riverhead Square overhaul

Council admits ‘funding limits’ for Riverhead Square overhaul

The major overhaul in the heart of Grimsby, for the Riverhead Square project, labelled ‘long overdue’ is set to start in the New Year.

At the Council’s Cabinet on Wednesday, November 16, work is expected to start in January for phase two of the £3.3m project.

The master plan for Grimsby town centre was subject to public consultation in 2019, though not all of the original intentions will be retained, due to inflation and rising costs.

“This is going to be a much more pleasant place in the town centre, a much greener place,” said Cllr Philip Jackson.

The council leader believes a public open space has the potential to host more public events, such as Grim Falfest, the Viking festival held in September.

However, he said, “There are one or two aspects that we aren’t able to include because of the funding limits we’ve got.”

There were also initial plans for “water-related features” estimated at £700,000.

Cllr Jackson claimed the “vast majority” of original plans would be fulfilled.

Cllr Stewart Swinburn labelled it as ‘Exciting times’.

“Hopefully in January, we will see spades in the ground and things happening in Riverhead Square,” he said.

Though he admitted a “pushback” from Northern Power and council officials on the fountain.

“It needs to be in by Christmas, we want to see that fountain there.”

“I am sure the public will believe us then when we say we are doing something about the regeneration of Grimsby town centre,” he added,

Cllr Ron Shepherd, the portfolio holder for safer and stronger communities, said:

“We are doing something about an area of the town that’s looking very dated and I think it is long overdue. At the moment, it’s looking left behind by a decade. I’m glad we are going ahead with regenerating it.”

In the council report on the second phase, it says the area currently “attracts substantial levels of “anti-social behaviour”.

A recent council survey found 77 percent of respondents say they felt unsafe at night.

“Another jewel in the crown for Riverhead and Grimsby shopping centre,” said Cllr Jackson.

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Jack joined the Gi team in January 2022.