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£20k shop locally boost for Cheadle

By MIG: Leek Post and Times  |  Posted: November 06, 2013

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CHEADLE town centre is set for a resurgence after a deal was struck by the district and town councils worth around £20,000.

The arrangement was drawn up following a meeting of the Mary Portas High Street Innovation Fund (HIF) working group.

Members, who include town councillors and business leaders, were presented with a proposal that as well as the £9,955 left in the HIF, Staffordshire Moorlands District Council (SMDC) would invest a further £9,692.

A total of £8,000 would be invested to start up Totally Locally Cheadle from the HIF, following on from a similar, successful initiative launched in Leek.

The district council would then contribute a further £4,000 to fund a further two years of mentoring support from Marc Briand, one of the key co-ordinators of the Leek scheme, of six hours a month for two years.

Marc Briand said the success of the Leek initiative could be replicated in Cheadle in two ways through Totally Locally Cheadle or Cheadle Pride, as part of a nationally recognised movement.

He said it would take branding, the use of social media and engaging with the community, and this could be done through workshops, as well as with businesses with one or two-day workshops, and it would need businesses to take ownership.

The cost of £8,000 would include production of all materials and six to nine months of his time on the ground for support, with a two-year campaign in total, then a second phase to mentor the businesses.

No chains would be allowed to take part and he could act on it as soon as the first two weeks in November.

A further £1,000 would be invested from the HIF for a street map of Cheadle for Tape Street car park, with SMDC funding a contribution of £3,692.

And finally, £400 will be made available for web and app marketing with Visit Peak District, and £500 for web and marketing with Destination Staffordshire from the HIF, with SMDC contributing £2,000 and offering the use of its in-house graphic designer worth a further £1,000.

Councillor Ian Plant, town mayor of Cheadle, said: “It has got to be good for the town to bring new things. Something has got to be done.

“The old Chamber of Trade and current business group have tried their best to boost the town, and the responsibility keeps falling on the same people.

“Hopefully this will help take some of the burden.

“Marc is used to doing this after the success of Totally Locally in Leek, and hopefully if he can get businesses on board he will take it further.

“It’s a way forward to try and get Cheadle growing again and the townspeople taking pride in where they live.”

“Leek has been given a good boost by it so hopefully we can follow on for Cheadle and bring in people from in and around the district into the town.” Councillor Sybil Ralphs, leader of the district council, said: “This is also in addition to the work that we are funding on Lulworth House to take that project forward, which is ongoing.

“We are also working with the county council on the sites highlighted in the Cheadle Masterplan, so Cheadle is having its share of our attention at the moment, which I’m pleased about and is something I’ve been really pushing for.

“This is great news for Cheadle. I’m delighted that the district council has been able to provide this match funding to support this initiative.

“The council wants to see Moorlands towns thrive and remain viable, and this project in Cheadle will certainly help to achieve that. I urge local people to get behind it and to support their local traders by shopping locally.”

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