January 31, 2022 3.00 pm This story is over 29 months old

Grimsby’s £36m link road funding bid ‘unlikely’ to go ahead – for now

The council has other priorities

The Grimsby West link road is likely to take a backseat to culture and regeneration schemes in the next round of Levelling Up Funding.

North East Lincolnshire Council was turned down for £36million for the controversial route in the first round of government bidding.

Funding initiatives have now been paused for the road – but the council says that it hasn’t given up on it.

Council leader Councillor Philip Jackson says the next round of bidding was likely to focus on the council’s ‘more immediate priorities’, likely including opportunities linked to culture and regeneration.

The government is expected to announce the details on the bidding process soon.

The Grimsby West link road is key to the council’s plan to opening the area for 3,800 new houses across four villages.

It is hoped that the road between the A46 and A180 would also relieve pressure on Grimsby’s town centre network.

Vocal campaigners have fought against it on environmental grounds, saying it would destroy the Freshney Valley.

The council requested £36million for the road in the first rounding of Levelling Up Funding.

Councillor Jackson said: “I wish to be clear that our decision to pause the active pursuit of funding streams for the strategic link road at this time has been taken so we can consider the authority’s more immediate priorities.

“It will allow us to take stock of the overall projects we have, to ensure we are in the very best position when the exact criteria for the next round of Levelling Up Fund bidding is released by Central Government. News on this is expected soon and of course we must, like any other authority, ensure our bids fit the criteria.

“In anticipation for the release of more details, the authority is looking at potential opportunities that may or may not materialise around regeneration, culture and growth. These may take priority over any bid submission for the strategic link road in the immediate future.

“However, I stress that the development of infrastructure for the area of Grimsby West is in our adopted Local Plan. It forms an integral part of plans for the wider borough to grow, with a development that – amongst other things – links the important employment sites on the Humber Bank with the south of the borough.

“Therefore, we have a duty to look at other funding opportunities in the medium to longer-term for the development of this road network. As stated in the past as and when this happens, it will be subject to thorough, open, and transparent engagement.

“We would also like to highlight again that any plans for the strategic link road remain separate to those for a housing scheme in Grimsby West, which is being led privately. The housing scheme is also contained within the adopted local plan.

“Whilst the council has triggered a review of the local plan to ensure it is kept up to date with regard to changes to national planning policy, and to ensure it maintains control of the pattern of future development, it is unlikely that our major projects will be significantly altered.”