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Borderlands Partnership March 2023 newsletter

Update from the Partnership Board

The Borderlands Partnership Board meeting in March was held in person at The Sill in Northumberland.

The Board welcomed Councillor Gail MacGregor, the new leader of Dumfries and Galloway Council.

The Board also thanked Councillors Stewart Young and John Mallinson, who are both standing down as part of the Local Government Reorganisation in Cumbria, for their enormous contributions to the Deal.

From April 1st representatives of the two new councils will join the Board: Councillor Mark Fryer, Leader of Cumberland Council; and Councillor Jonathan Brook, Leader of Westmorland and Furness Council.

Place Programme

Two more Place Programme Plans, for Longtown and Kirkconnel, have been endorsed by the Partnership Board.

The Place Programme Board welcomed the hard work and strong plans from the two places providing important recommendations as part of this process for the places to consider and integrate as part of the development process.

The programme is about helping places boost economic activity and recognises the importance of rural market and coastal towns to the local economy.

In total 22 towns across the Borderlands will have a Place Plan. They are:

  • Cumbria: Dalton in Furness, Egremont, Longtown, Penrith, Ulverston, Wigton

  • Northumberland: Alnwick, Bedlington, Bellingham, Haltwhistle, Newbiggin, Prudhoe, Rothbury

  • Scottish Borders: Eyemouth, Galashiels, Hawick, Jedburgh

  • Dumfries & Galloway: Gretna, Kirkconnel, Stranraer, Whithorn, Wigtown

Ad Gefrin

The much anticipated Ad Gefrin museum and whisky distillery opened to the public in Wooler on Saturday March 25th.

The museum tells the story of the Anglo-Saxon Royal court of Northumbria, while the distillery will bring whisky-making back to the county for the first time in 200 years.

It is supporting 60 fulltime jobs, the majority of which have been filled by residents of north Northumberland, and aims to attract 35,000 visitors a year.

The project has received £4million from the Borderlands Deal and sits within the Supporting Business, Innovation and Skills theme.

Hadrian’s Wall

A working group has been formed to progress the Hadrian’s Wall and Wider Roman Frontier Borderlands Investment Programme.

It aims to make Hadrian’s Wall the most widely recognised and authentic visitor destination in the Borderlands region, and the UK’s leading example of heritage-inspired inclusive growth, by 2030.

The working group bring together the five Visitor Attractions projects, the Visitor Exploration projects in Cumbria and Northumberland, plus the Hadrian’s Wall Partnership.

The projects are now developing their business cases to secure a share of funding from the Deal.

Borders Railway

A costed proposal for an Outline Business Case for the Borders Railway project will be produced after agreement from the UK Government and Scottish Government.

Part of the historic Waverley Route reopened in 2015 following its closure during the Beeching cuts of the 1960s.

£10 million was allocated within the Deal to proceed with assessing the benefits and challenges of extending the line from Tweedbank to Carlisle.

Borderlands Video

A video has been produced outlining the progress which has been made since the start of the Borderlands Inclusive Growth Deal two years ago.

It highlights key projects and programmes as well as the four investment themes which underpin the Deal.

The video can be viewed here



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