What’s the Town Deal? Lead council edition

This factsheet, What’s the Town Deal? is a compilation of the learnings from the Business in the Community (BITC) place initiatives that are currently taking place in Blackpool, Wisbech, and Lowestoft. It also includes insight into two emerging place pilots, Bradford and Rochdale, as well as the work with Lead Councils on Town Deals to date.
In addition, there is information distilled within the factsheet to assist Lead Councils in working with businesses to unlock the full collaborative potential of their communities through the Towns Fund.

Background

When the Government published its Towns Fund Prospectus in November 2019, it outlined the difficulties facing many UK towns: ageing populations, a lack of economic opportunity, limited investment, poor transport, and digital connectivity, retail decline, the closure of leisure facilities, and low levels of social mobility.

The impact of the global pandemic

Now, as the unprecedented impact of the global pandemic weighs disproportionately on these same towns, the Towns Fund presents an increasingly critical opportunity to, first, cement some of the significant and rapid changes to the ways communities collaborate (that we have witnessed during the emergency response to COVID-19) and, second, aid long-term recovery and prosperity.

Our work with the wider community

Business in the Community (BITC) is the oldest and largest business-led membership organisation dedicated to responsible business. We have a long history of working with business and the wider community to build thriving places for people to live and work.

The BITC place leadership team

BITC’s Place Leadership Team brings together business, civic leadership, and the third sector to make a long-term, transformative impact on communities. We bring business skills to bear on challenges and opportunities within neighbourhoods, working with community concerns and aspirations. In our pilot places, we facilitate and contribute to a deliverable vision which lifts ambition and develops confidence in that vision by working with partners to deliver it.