Ipswich: Million-plus boost for town’s creative side

THE town centre is set to get a �1.2million boost to turn it into a centre for creative businesses.

The borough and its partners are hoping to attract new businesses from computer games designers to art-based companies thanks to a grant from Europe.

The borough is to work with CSV Media and the Eastern Enterprise Hub to develop a support network for the new start-ups, which could also link up with similar businesses in France.

European funding worth �600,000 has been given for the scheme, entitled RECREATE, which will be matched by the same amount from the local partners.

Ipswich council’s inward development officer Simon Papworth said the money was not destined for companies themselves, it was to build up the support network in the town centre.

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He said: “We want to be able to turn Ipswich into a real centre for creative businesses and working with CSV and the Eastern Enterprise Hub we can offer a great opportunity for these new businesses.”

Borough leader David Ellesmere said: “This is a major investment we have won for Ipswich. Boosting the town centre and providing real assistance to people to bring employment and new business to Ipswich is our top priority.

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“We will be starting work on a detailed implementation plan straight away. This was a complex bid and we are grateful for the help provided by the County Council and the UK lead partner Medway Council.”

Mr Ellesmere said the borough would be providing accommodation to sustain the new enterprises and build a creative hub in the town centre.

Andrea Davies, Chief Executive, Eastern Enterprise Hub said: “We are delighted to be part of this fantastic initiative that has the dual benefits of driving economic prosperity and supporting the diversity and attractiveness of the town centre.”

Will the money help transform the town centre? Write to Your Letters, Ipswich Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, IP4 1AN or e-mail starletters@archant.co.uk

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