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The BIG Drive Home

2:00 pm 6:00 pm

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The BIG Drive Home

2:00 pm 6:00 pm


Improvements to Staffordshires Green Spaces, Grant to make Stoke Town Centre greener

Written by on 15 May 2024

Some of Staffordshire’s best-loved green spaces have been earmarked for investment and improvement.

Country parks at Cannock Chase and Chasewater, as well as the 92-mile Staffordshire Way will receive an £18 million investment in the coming years.

Victoria Wilson, Staffordshire County Council’s cabinet member for Communities and Culture, said: “In recent years there has been a rediscovery and renewed appreciation of our green spaces, which has seen more and more people using them.

“In Staffordshire the council invests millions of pounds on roads, schools, business parks and internet provision to support residents by helping our economy, but we also want to keep investing in the county as a place to live in and enjoy here and now.”

Long term plans for the Staffordshire Way which runs from Mow Cop to Kinver include relaunching, improving and promoting the area. As well as promoting physical activity and enjoyment of the countryside, the scheme has the potential to support local businesses and communities to promote tourism.

The council’s country parks saw a marked increase in visitors during and after the pandemic, as people rediscovered the natural beauty and open spaces on their doorstep.

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Visitors to Stoke town center will see its outdoor spaces become brighter and greener thanks to a £500,000 grant.

The money has been awarded to the Stoke High Street Accelerator project from the UK Government’s Department of Levelling Up Housing and Communities.

Staff and volunteers from a range of organisations including town centre businesses, and creative organisations B Arts and Festival Stoke, and Friends of Spode Rose Garden helped apply for the grant.

A range of projects have been suggested (although not yet agreed) including more floral displays throughout the town, a wild-play area for children and improving the walkway on the canal into the town.

Councillor Chris Robinson, cabinet member for housing, regeneration and planning, said: “We’re delighted and will use this funding to boost visits to our high street. We have identified a range of town center entry points that would benefit from improvement to encourage the flow of people. We will use the money to create pretty floral meadows, and pockets of wildlife to attract families in particular.

“It will also be fantastic to pay homage to our ceramic heritage through colour palettes infused throughout brightly coloured planters outside our markets, libraries and pedestrian areas for families to see and smell. We’ll also be offering community horticultural sessions, art trails and waterway walks as well as nature connection events.”

A workshop is planned to be held in June where the Stoke HSA board, businesses and stakeholders will meet to explore the challenges that town centers are facing and what would help to make the town center better. If you’re a business or community group who wants to be involved or for further information, please contact StokeHSA@stoke.gov.uk