New Shop Front Improvement scheme to enhance high streets

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Last Updated: 28 May 2019 11:22am

A new scheme to enhance high streets across the borough has been introduced by Tonbridge & Malling Borough Council.  Shop owners within the borough’s town and district centres can now apply for a Shopfront Improvement Grant of up to £5,000 from a £100,000 pot to help with refurbishments to the front of their premises.

Last year, a consortium of local authorities across Kent and Medway were successful in bidding to Central Government for funding through the Business Rates Retention initiative, and the Borough Council has used part of this funding to help support independent high street businesses across the borough through this scheme.

Six local businesses have already been successful in securing a grant towards improvements:

  1. Hardy’s (wine store)– 95 High Street, West Malling – refurbished awning
  2. Coco & Bloom (florist) – 63 High Street, West Malling – 2 new awnings
  3. Copy Shoppe (copying, design and printing) – 27 High Street, West Malling – repaint and signage
  4. Sancho’s (takeaway) – 156 High Street, Tonbridge – repaint
  5. Glow Dry Cleaners – 4 Quarry Hill Road, Tonbridge – new signage
  6. Bakehouse at 124 High Street (artisan bakery, coffee shop and tea rooms), Tonbridge – refurbished awning

Leader and Cabinet Member for Economic Regeneration, Nicolas Heslop says: “This initiative has been established to support our local shops and brighten up our town and district centres. I am really pleased to be able to support our first tranche of businesses and look forward to receiving further applications as this project progresses.”

Clare Barton, Owner of the Bakehouse at 124 says: “We are absolutely delighted and would like to thank everyone who donated to our crowdfunding campaign and the Borough Council for their generous contribution towards the refurbishment of our awnings. We look forward to enhancing this beautiful historic building and creating a visual impact on Tonbridge High Street.”

This scheme is part of a programme of wider support for High Streets in the Borough, which has also seen the delivery of environmental improvements, events and business support.

For more information and to apply for a Shopfront Improvement Grant please contact economic.regeneration@tmbc.gov.uk