YOUR QUESTIONS ANSWERED
Here you’ll find the answers to some frequently asked questions about our emerging Town Investment Plan and all our Vision King’s Lynn activities. Have a question too? You can send it in to us via our Contact page.
What is Vision King’s Lynn?
Vision King’s Lynn is the collective name for the plans and funding for King’s Lynn town.
Vision King’s Lynn encompasses funding programmes and schemes benefitting the town, including Town Deal the Heritage Action Zone, and Space to Innovate Enterprise Zones.
Vision King’s Lynn is the banner under which all consultation, information and engagement related the Town Investment Plan will take place.
What is the Town Investment Plan?
The Town Investment Plan sets out the vision for King’s Lynn. It outlines a strategic programme of investment and it has been developed by the Town Deal Board, a partnership of business, civic and community organisations, and councillors with extensive community involvement.
The plan will enhance the town centre experience for all, providing cultural and leisure opportunities, a new residential offer, and a revived riverfront.
It will support business innovation and collaboration, and increase access to learning, skills, and employment.
It will also provide for improved and sustainable connections, and will help with the town’s recovery and renewal from the impact of Covid-19, ensuring the long-term success of King’s Lynn.
What will the Town Investment Plan achieve?
The Town Investment Plan’s vision is for:
- A revived historic waterfront: a place to live and visit;
- A repurposed town centre;
- A skilled workforce for growing industry;
- A home for innovative and productive business;
- A sustainably connected town.
Through the vision and the delivery of the plan, the following outcomes will be achieved:
- New opportunities for skills and jobs for our young people and all those affected by Covid 19 and needing to reskill, linked to demand from local employers and opportunities in local sectors;
- Growing innovative businesses – attracted by our connectivity and high quality of life and supported by the networks and collaborative support that businesses need;
- A repurposed town centre with new experiences and businesses – increasing footfall, enhancing cultural opportunities, with its different parts better connected;
- A high quality residential and leisure offer in the historic town core and riverfront – attracting new people to live and work in the town centre, whilst protecting our unique heritage;
A sustainably connected town – through reduced congestion and better connectivity between the town, its catchment area and residential growth areas, creating safer walking and cycling routes and supporting remote working.
How will the Town Investment Plan be funded?
In June 2021, the government announced that King’s Lynn had been allocated £25M in Town Deal funding, the maximum amount. The fund was set up to drive the economic regeneration of towns to deliver long-term economic and productivity growth.
The Town Investment Plan acts as a ‘wrapper’ for all funding in the town centre, including the Heritage Action Zone, and the High Street Heritage Action Zone. This ensures a holistic and integrated approach to investment.
Match funding will also be sought for projects and activities outlined in the plan.
What’s included in the Town Investment Plan?
Projects in the Town Investment Plan are currently being finalised but these – the Town Deal Projects – will strategically align with the following themes:
- Economic productivity through urban regeneration;
- Planning and land use;
- Skills and enterprise;
- Infrastructure and connectivity.
For each Town Deal project, a business case will be developed and submitted to government. These business cases will be developed by June 2022.
One Town Deal project which is already underway is the School of Nursing which received accelerated funding of £597,000. The project will see high quality nursing training facilities developed at the College of West Anglia campus and will deliver the Level 5 (foundation degree equivalent) Associate Nursing Apprenticeship to support the future workforce needs of the Queen Elizabeth Hospital.
The project is being delivered by the College of West Anglia, Anglia Ruskin University, and the Queen Elizabeth Hospital
Who is the Town Deal Board?
The Town Deal Board is made up of representatives from all tiers of local authority, the North West Norfolk Member of Parliament, local businesses, the local enterprise partnership, Discover King’s Lynn, the business improvement district, Department of Work and Pensions, the QEH, cultural institutions, housing associations, and arms-length bodies such as Historic England.
The board is responsible for developing the Town Investment Plan, developing a clear programme of interventions, coordinating resources, influencing stakeholders, and overseeing the effective delivery of the Town Investment Plan and the Town Deal projects in the plan.
The chair of the Town Deal Board is Graham Perkins, CTO and Founder of Merxin Ltd, and vice-chair is Michael Baldwin, a local business owner.
There are a number of sub-groups to the board that oversee specific themes and projects.
What are the sub-groups?
The board sub-groups help explore ideas, priorities, develop plans against available funding, or secure additional input to help the board deliver projects. Some of the subgroups are made up of specialists and council officers, others require input from a wider range of stakeholders and other interested parties. They are:
- Skills Working Group: This group will be led by Norfolk County Council and includes representatives from the College of West Anglia, Department for Work & Pensions, UEA, and organisations involved in the delivery of education and training. Its aim will be to explore what skills and support are needed and how they could be provided.
- Youth Forum: The Youth Forum will be to ensure we get young people’s input and perspective into plans and ideas. Anyone interested in being involved in this Youth Forum should register their interest through the contact form.
- Town Centre Repurposing & Public Realm Working Group: This is chaired by Vicky Etheridge, of Discover King’s Lynn (the King’s Lynn BID). The group will be looking at prioritising the projects within the recently prepared public realm action plan for King’s Lynn and look at how vacant buildings can be repurposed to support the ongoing vibrancy of the town centre.
- Guildhall and Creative Hub Stakeholder and Community Group: This is chaired by Michael Baldwin (Vice Chair of the Town Deal Board). Members of this group will include users such as King’s Lynn Festival, King’s Lynn Operatic and Dramatic Society, Shakespeare Guildhall Trust and Collusion, along with any potential users of the venue and those with an interest in creative industries.
- Guildhall and Creative Hub Advisory Group: This is also chaired by Michael Baldwin, and invited members will include amongst others Borough Council of King’s Lynn & West Norfolk, Norfolk County Council, Norfolk Museums Services, specialists with theatre operation backgrounds and the National Trust who own the building and lease it to the council.
The two Guildhall and Creative Hub groups will each have a different role but their overall purpose will be the same.
How has the community been involved in the Town Investment Plan so far?
At the heart of the Town Investment Plan is engagement and since November 2019, more than 1,500 responses have been received to consultation that has included:
- Young people’s survey: understanding perceptions of the town centre amongst 16–25-year-olds, and their hopes and concerns
- Walking and cycling survey: gaining insight into people’s experiences of walking and cycling in the King’s Lynn area, and the improvements they would like to see. This will inform the Local Cycling and Walking Improvement Plan which is being developed by Norfolk County Council and the Borough Council as part of the Town Investment Plan
- Consumer and business confidence surveys: understanding how people and businesses in the town feel as the town centre reopened after lockdown
- Town centre ideas: inviting ideas for the town centre on themes such as town centre living
- Town centre use and satisfaction survey: seeking insight into how people use the town centre and how they feel about it.
This is in addition to previous consultation carried out in February 2019 which sought to understand local people’s views of the town centre and which generated 752 responses.
Further consultation and engagement will take place throughout the course of the delivery of the Town Investment Plan and Town Deal projects.
What’s the timescale?
The Town Deal projects business cases will be developed and submitted by end of June 2022 with the Town Deal set to be agreed with government by this date too. The Town Deal will allow the Town Deal funding to be released for the delivery of the projects.
Each project will have its own timescale which will depend on its scale and scope. The projects will be delivered over the next ten years and altogether will bring transformational change and sustainable, long-lasting benefits for the town.
How can I get involved?
If you’d like to share your thoughts with us or join our mailing list and receive updates of progress and consultation, you can do so via our contact page
We will also be posting updates on consultation and engagement activities on our website and our social media channels.
Please do get involved and help us to shape the future of King’s Lynn.