£50m Knottingley masterplan to revitalise town approved

It is hoped the plans will boost economic growth and people's wellbeing in the ex mining town.
It is hoped the plans will boost economic growth and people's wellbeing in the ex mining town.

A £50million masterplan to transform the fortunes of Knottingley has been approved.

Wakefield Council has released cash to help revitalise the town and tackle its issues with unemployment and deprivation over the next 10 years.

Ward councillors Graham Stokes, Harry Ellis and Glenn Burton (from left to right) have welcomed the scheme

Ward councillors Graham Stokes, Harry Ellis and Glenn Burton (from left to right) have welcomed the scheme

A "multi-use" skills and community space will be run out of Kellingley Social Club to help improve people's job prospects, and extra sports provision will be set up to help those who can't get to the council's new £20million leisure centre in Pontefract Park.

Green spaces, parks and waterways will be spruced up and a community-led youth project on the Warwick estate, which has had problems with crime and anti-social behaviour, will begin soon.

An annual careers event for young people will also be held, a successful pilot scheme to improve shop fronts will be extended and the council will encourage larger businesses in the area to pay for their workers' travel as an incentive to stay working in the town.

Deputy council leader Denise Jeffery said putting the plans into action was overdue, but important.

A community-run youth village has been proposed for the Warwick estate.

A community-run youth village has been proposed for the Warwick estate.

Speaking at a Cabinet meeting on Tuesday, where the masterplan was approved, she said: "There is so much we are going to do.

"It matters to Knottingley, and it's been waiting a long time for this. It's Knottingley's turn, quite frankly."

The 'Knottingley Vision' as the scheme is being called will be officially launched at Kellingley Social Club next Tuesday.

People in the town had been asked for their views on how it could be improved as the plans were put together.

Local ward councillor Glenn Burton described the plans as "very, very positive".

"I'm very pleased to see that some of this has come from the consultation that was held with residents," he said.

"All of this will go a long way to improving the town and people are having more confidence in what we're doing.

"I know it's been a slow burner, but we're moving forward in a positive way now."

The masterplan also includes a mention of the 2,500 homes which have already been earmarked for the town over the next two decades.