An Aberystwyth partnership has secured nearly £250,000 of funding which will be used to keep the streets clean, develop a town app and create tourist trails.
The partnership is a joint effort between Aberystwyth Town Council, Menter Aberystwyth and Aberystwyth Business Club.
Prosiect Aber will run until December next year after securing £248,000 from the UK Shared Prosperity Fund via Levelling Up funding.
Among the schemes the project aims to deliver are supplementing ongoing town cleaning initiatives, marketing Aberystwyth through introducing tourism trails, new visitor boards, ensuring a solid and cohesive online presence through a website and app, and piloting smart technology.
Aberystwyth mayor and co-chair of Aberystwyth Business Club, Kerry Ferguson, said: “The Shared Prosperity funding is extremely exciting for us as a new partnership, and we are all looking forward to seeing tangible improvements over the coming months.
“The town council sees the funding as a means of achieving bigger and better things for the people and businesses of Aberystwyth and we are delighted that a difference is already being made.
“For example, the Aberystwyth Old Town market at the top of town is already revitalising a historic but under-utilised area whilst at the same time supporting local small traders.
“By offering permanent employment to the grant-funded market co-ordinator, the town council will ensure the Aberystwyth Old Town markets will continue beyond the Shared Prosperity grant period.
"The same will apply to the new Town Revitalisation post which will be responsible for projects involving the look of the town.
“Prosiect Aber’s unveiling comes at a time when Aberystwyth has felt the ramifications of reduced foot traffic, the shutting down of local businesses, and the socioeconomic impacts of the Covid-19 pandemic. As a partnership we are of one mind in trying to reverse this trend and in rejuvenating the town’s economic and cultural vitality.”
Emlyn Jones, chair of Menter Aberystwyth said: “While we’re kicking off with immediate town centre improvements we have our sights set on bigger, future projects. The idea is to use the UK Shared Prosperity Fund to build a strong base, on which to apply for further funding for more development.
“In addition to working with community and business representatives, the formation of this new Aberystwyth partnership will also provide future opportunities to collaborate with major stakeholders such as Aberystwyth University, the National Library of Wales and the Books Council of Wales. Inclusive dialogue is key to success.”