Levelling Up Fund Failure.

Ipswich Star reports: Suffolk MPs and councillors have spoken of their “bitter disappointment” after the county missed out on millions of pounds of Government Levelling Up funding, meaning vital regeneration projects could have to be scrapped.

Ipswich Borough Council Leader, David Ellesmere said: “The council is bitterly disappointed that the Government has turned down our Levelling Up bid.
“The bid would have enabled Broomhill Lido to have been brought back to life and a new sports, athletics and gymnastics centre to have been developed at Gainsborough.
“We and our partners will now need to review the viability of both these projects. While we won’t rush into any decisions, there is no disguising that this is a significant setback.

Ipswich MP Tom Hunt pledged to work with fellow Suffolk MP Dan Poulter, who represents Central Suffolk and North Ipswich, to look for other opportunities for funding for Broomhill lido.

Jack Abbott, Labour’s prospective parliamentary candidate for Ipswich, said: “This is a real hammer blow for Ipswich and has put these crucial projects at risk.
“It is yet another example of the town’s current MPs failing to deliver – the Conservatives treat Ipswich as a complete afterthought.


2 thoughts on “Levelling Up Fund Failure.

  1. I’m rather sad to hear about Suffolk missing out like this, a lot of things could have been achieved with this money, what’s the way ahead now for Broomhill and everything else??

    1. Hi Joe,

      A massive disappointment yesterday. The Levelling Up Awards outcomes and spread are bewildering;
      Cambridgeshire £50m, Norfolk £40m, North Essex £40m (no surprise that the new City of Colchester, with a higher profile than Ipswich now, gained has £20m).
      Suffolk £0, Ipswich £0 (both Broomhill Pool £2.8m & Ipswich Active £18m) rejected.
      We seem to be a forgotten town in a forgotten county!

      However, once the political storm has settled, the Broomhill Pool Trust intends to meet with stakeholders to look at the positives of the scheme, and to discuss/explore what can be done to bridge the inflationary gap on the 2019 approved scheme.

      • Let’s keep in mind that the scheme still has £7m pledged, and possibly only needs another £1.5m to bridge the inflationary gap and get over the line.
      • IBC’s 2009 All Options Appraisal /Fusion’s 2015 Stage 1 Pass appraisal confirmed that the pool is grade II listed (unlikely to be reversed) and built in park land (since 1925); and with the land having no other suitable uses or re-sale value.
      • The costs to convert Broomhill to another leisure or recreation use (or even knock down) would be equivalent to, or greater than, the costs IBC have presently committed to its restoration.
      • There is £3.4m NLHF hanging in the balance. The is the first ever large sum for CSNI constituency, or ever spent in the Northwest of Ipswich. It would be unforgivable for the people of Ipswich to lose such a massive inward investment.
      • Broomhill Pool is recognised as one of the finest lidos in Britain, and a successful scheme would put the town on the map for all the right reasons.
      • Both IBC and Fusion have invested considerable monies and effort to get the scheme thus far,
      • It now seems unlikely that the borough will get funding or secure income enough in the near term to fund a new £50m pool at Portman Road (this scheme is a 25m pool and will only replace Crown Pools). Broomhill Pool in comparison will double Ipswich’s public water swimming space for less than 5% of the cost (to the borough) of that scheme, and can be completed in 18 months! The project has wide public support, has cross party support, is ready to go and can be started swiftly.

      So, for a little bit extra to get the restoration done it remains in the IBC, IBC taxpayers, Fusion’s and Ipswich’s best interest.

      The Broomhill Pool Trust has worked tirelessly since 2003. We have secured political support, attracted in a respected not-for-profit operator, and brought together core funders to secure £7m funding.
      Let’s work together to conclude this epic 20-year effort to save East Anglia’s only Art Deco, Grade II listed urban lido, and make a great success of it!

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