Following the announcement that the Townscape Heritage project has been successful in securing Heritage Lottery Funding, the groups behind the bid are all looking forward to seeing new life been brought back to Academy Street in Inverness.
Mike Smith, Manager of Inverness Business Improvement District said: “We very much welcome this Award to start the regeneration of Academy Street which is such an important gateway to the city centre.”
Chair of the Inverness City Heritage Trust, Councillor Jimmy Gray said: “This is great news for Inverness and reinforces the hard work the Trust has done in the city centre over the last decade and focusses our joint resources on Academy Street.”
Provost of Inverness, Councillor Helen Carmichael said: “Firstly I would like to thank everyone for all their hard work in putting together our application for funding and to local businesses and members of the public who took part in the consultation events we ran. It is great that we can now look forward and put plans into action.
“It is not just about restoring historic buildings, but also about bringing investment, jobs and visitors to this part of the city and restoring a sense of place. I look forward to seeing work on the ground start.”
Chair of the Steering Group, Councillor Richard Laird said: “This is the most exciting development in the city centre for a number of years. People have been crying out for work to be done to restore the iconic buildings so now the preparation work is done, as soon as we receive all the paperwork we can start to get work on the ground going.”
The Inverness Townscape Heritage Project has already secured funding from Highland Council (£725,000) and Historic Scotland via the Inverness City Heritage Trust (ICHT) (£946,000) together with this announcement confirming the Heritage Lottery contribution of £1,495,000 brings the total pot of funding for investment on Academy Street to just over £3million.
Lucy Casot, Head of the Heritage Lottery Fund in Scotland, said: “HLF is delighted to support Inverness in its ambitions to give the historic character of Academy Street a new lease of life. The regeneration of town centres is an obvious way in which we as an organisation can make an important contribution to improving the economy of an area and the standard of living for the people resident there. Investing National Lottery money to revitalise this historic street, will not only make it a more attractive place to live, visit and invest in, it will also provide jobs and training opportunities for local people.”