MP Theresa Villiers has welcomed the £352,000 given to Barnet Council by the Government to help local high streets safely reopen as the coronavirus lockdown is gradually eased.
The Reopening High Streets Safely Fund will allow the authority to introduce measures to help people return to work and bring customers back to shops.
Theresa has already contacted council leader Dan Thomas to ask for local high streets in the Chipping Barnet constituency to receive a fair share of the money, including High Barnet, New Barnet, East Barnet Village, Greenhill Parade, Whetstone High Road, Hampden Square, Friern Barnet and Colney Hatch Lane. Councillors have been approached by her to ask if they have projects that could benefit. She has also suggested Chipping Barnet Town Team, which champions Barnet High Street, convenes an extra meeting to feed in ideas. This is due to take place tomorrow
“It’s important we find effective ways for this money to be used quickly here in Barnet to make sure our high streets can play their part in kickstarting the economic recovery from Covid-19,” said Theresa.
“I will continue to liaise with the council, councillors and local community groups to find out what can be done to put this substantial sum to the best possible use. It will do a great deal to help shops reopen and give people the confidence to return to the high street."
The £50 million fund for English councils was recently announced High Streets Minister Simon Clarke. It is designed to prepare for the reopening of non-essential retail when the scientific advice allows, introduce a range of safety measures to kick-start local economies, get people back to work and customers back to the shops.
Councils can also use the money to develop local marketing campaigns to explain the changes to the public and reassure them that their high streets and other commercial areas are safe.
It is the government’s ambition to reopen non-essential retail in a phased way from 1 June, subject to the scientific advice.