Over £17 million has been given to boost Woolwich town centre, described by Greenwich Council as "a piece of the jigsaw" for its ambitious plans for the area.

The investment comes from the Government's Future High Street fund with the aim of supporting Woolwich recover from the pandemic, but also "transform the town centre into a vibrant place to live, work, experience and shop."

The £17.15 million will be centred mainly on the Old Town Hall, Powis Street and Beresford Square area of Woolwich, which has Crossrail inbound.

But Greenwich Council's Denise Scott-McDonald says the funding is "just one piece of the jigsaw when it comes to our ambitious vision and commitment to investing in Woolwich."

Woolwich High Street in south east London

Woolwich High Street in south east London

The local authority says it will add to the £91.6 million already being invested in council-run projects, sich as the Woolwich Leisure Centre, refurbishment of the Tramshed theatre and Woolwich Works.

Cllr Scott-McDonald, the borough's lead for regeneration and growth, said: "Construction has already started on our state-of-the art leisure centre, we’re going to be sensitively restoring the much-loved Tramshed Theatre, we’ve also successfully bid for funding from Historic England’s High Street Heritage Action Zone and Woolwich Works, London’s most exciting new events venue, is opening in September.

“Everything we’re doing is to attract residents to the market and the town centre, increasing spend and footfall, supporting local businesses and increasing the diversity of what's on offer – so when Crossrail opens, we’re ready.”

Robert Jenrick speaking on Woolwich High Street

Robert Jenrick speaking on Woolwich High Street

Housing, Communities and Local Government Secretary Robert Jenrick confirmed today that 57 areas across the country were to receive money from the new batch of Future High Street funding.

And Jenrick opted to visit Woolwich High Street to make the announcement to "see how it will be used to bring more visitors to this corner of London."

Woolwich High Street in south east London

Woolwich High Street in south east London

<blockquote class="twitter-tweet"><p lang="en" dir="ltr">Woolwich is set to receive £17.15 million as part of today’s <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/FutureHighStreetFund?src=hash&ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#FutureHighStreetFund</a> government investment.<br><br>Secretary of State <a href="https://twitter.com/RobertJenrick?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@RobertJenrick</a> went to see the transformative effect this funding will have in bringing in new business, shoppers & tourists to local high streets. <a href="https://t.co/Z1icK5zT4j">pic.twitter.com/Z1icK5zT4j</a></p>— Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Govt (@mhclg) <a href="https://twitter.com/mhclg/status/1394993215997161472?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">May 19, 2021</a></blockquote> <script async src="https://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js" charset="utf-8"></script>

he said the funding should give areas a much-needed boost, and would be used for a vast array of programmes, from new housing and office space to areas for outdoor performance and markets, "all with the aim of bringing more visitors and businesses to areas which were once bustling centres of activity."

The Future High Streets Fund was launched in December 2018 and is a key part of the Government’s plan to renew and reshape town centres – making them a more attractive place to live, work and visit.

As part of its plans, over the next three years, to make Woolwich more attractive to businesses and improve public spaces the Council has said it will:

  • Repurpose the Old Town Hall to create new workspace
  • Enhance the historic Royal Arsenal Gatehouse to make it a focal point and entrance to the town centre - exploring options for a cafe on the ground floor and improve workspace on the first floor
  • Provide new workspace in Green’s End Corner in partnership with Transport for London
  • Enhance Beresford Square and install new semi-permanent market stalls
  • Improve public space in Beresford Square and Powis Street by decluttering and making it greener
  • Connect the Crossrail station to the town centre via Beresford Square market
  • Celebrate Woolwich’s historic, architectural and cultural heritage.