We are a great country, but one thing is holding us back. While talent is spread equally across the UK, too often opportunity is not.
Leveling Up is about making sure everyone from every corner of our country has access to decent, well-paid jobs, and good public transportation, hospitals and schools. Leveling Up is about closing the gap between the ‘best off’ parts of our country and the ones that have been struggling.
That’s why the Government is shifting its resources and focus to the parts of the UK that have too often been forgotten.
In these communities, town centers are going to be regenerated, jobs created through businesses being encouraged to invest, and hospitals, schools, and public transport improved.
Scotland is already a fantastic place to live – and now it will benefit from millions of pounds of investment to build on its greatest assets such as the University of Glasgow, flourishing tourism and its burgeoning financial sector.
There’ll also be money assigned to regenerate Paisley, with the redevelopment of its museum and town hall, as well as £3m of funding for the reopening of the prized Burrell Collection this month.
Meanwhile, the AMIDS South project will receive £38.7m from the Leveling Up fund to improve road, rail and other transport links to Paisley, boosting employment opportunities and access to education for residents.
The UK Government has also invested in the expansion of Aberdeen Harbour, as well as provided £6.3 million funding towards a Global Underwater Hub and £20m for a new marketplace as part of the ambitious City Center Masterplan, which includes the development of the beachfront.
There will be two Green Freeports in Scotland that will attract prosperity, bringing investment and jobs.
Boosting the local community
The last two years have been among the toughest of our lifetime, so our cities, towns and high streets need a boost now more than ever. Great progress is being made in lots of ways, with the rollout of super-fast gigabit broadband, the increase in the national living wage and recruitment of more police officers.
But there’s much more to do to create a fairer country where we all have a share of opportunity and prosperity.
Leveling Up means different things in different parts of the UK, and it’s so important to find out what communities want and how they can grasp new opportunities.
So what does leveling up mean to you? And what does it mean for your local area? The UK Government wants to make sure local people have more of a say in the changes that affect them – after all, people on the ground know what’s needed better than anyone.
It wants everyone to be proud of where they live, and if your local area is falling short at the moment, there’s an ambitious plan to make sure it gets to a level where everyone has the same chances in life.
The regeneration you need
Every area has its share of talent, but it doesn’t have a fair share of opportunity. Perhaps you’d have to travel to get a higher-paid job or take your kids to a better school because they’re not within reach in your area. The UK Government is investing in closing this gap for good.
Leveling Up is a huge job – and it’s not something that can be done by just one policy. This is why the public and private sectors, central and local Government are coming together to deliver it.
Spending will be split more equally across areas in all corners of England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland.
To find out more about Leveling Up and how the plans will improve your area, as well as how you can get involved with decision making, please go to gov.uk/levellingup
George Holan is chief editor at Plainsmen Post and has articles published in many notable publications in the last decade.