The Accelerated Towns Programme is a collection of projects delivered across the market towns of St Ives, Huntingdon and Ramsey to address the impacts of COVID-19 on local towns and town centres. The Accelerated Towns Programme also forms part of our wider COVID-19 recovery programme.
In December 2020, the District Council submitted bids to the Cambridgeshire & Peterborough Combined Authority (CPCA), resulting in a total of £1.26 million of Combined Authority funding for the three market towns to deliver impactful projects to enhance the usability and user experience of the town centres.
Working alongside the Go Jauntly app, we have organised a selection of walks to encourage people to get out and about in the green spaces across the district.
Leisure walking is a good way to start walking, build up fitness and resilience which can then build to walking for day-to-day travel to school, work or to the shops. It is key to encourage residents to think about walking or cycling rather than jumping in the car, especially for shorter journeys as its better for the environment and improves health and wellbeing.
As of the end of May 2022, 4,550 walks have been embarked on with the app across the district!
To access these walks, download the Go Jauntly app.
We have completed the installation of electric vehicle charging points in our Pay and Display car parks. These charge points are located in St Neots, St Ives and Huntingdon and are made up of a mixture of 3kw and 7kw chargers, utilising existing site power supplies.
In 2020, a survey of 400 residents said that one of the main barriers to purchasing an electric vehicle (EV) was the availability of charging points. As of June 2022, in the last 12 months 55,472 kWh of energy has been used to charge electric vehicles across the district and power cleaner travel, resulting in an estimated saving of 31,064kg of CO2.
View the locations of the EV Charging points in District Council car parks.
Modern Waste Solution
Modern simplified street furniture/places to dwell (solar benches/covered benches)
Solar benches have been installed on the high streets of both Huntingdon and Ramsey, offering revamped seating with digital infrastructure in the form of free street Wi-Fi and device charging capabilities. Additionally, covered benches offer shade and shelter from the elements where residents and visitors can take a moment to stop and rest, as well as act as meeting point to catch up with friends and family.
These state-of-the-art benches work on clean solar energy and offer additional user benefits as well as providing new places for residents and visitors to relax and take in what each town centre has to offer. The new street furniture also provides an enhanced visual impact to sites, in addition to creating new and innovative spaces to dwell and socialise.
Parklets have been installed in St Ives and in Ramsey. They are small, designated areas that not only provide a place for visitors to the town centres to relax, but also a host of benefits to the high street.
Research suggests that these small parks can actively increase footfall to local businesses, support active travel in encouraging people to leave their car at home and walk, and clean air with pollution absorbing plants. They are also ideal for showcasing local businesses and bringing people together through shared space and conversation.
The parklets will be maintained by the District Council. However, the opportunity for adoption of a parklet by a local group or business is being explored for promotion and to help look after its planting. If you are interested in finding out more about parklet adoption, please email email@example.com.
Cycle storage shelters have been installed in eight different locations across the district, including St Neots, Huntingdon, and St Ives. These brand-new shelters offer an increase in capacity for cycle storage allowing for more residents and visitors to town centres to store their bicycles securely and confidently during extended visits.
Sites for SMEs
Completion and further details to be confirmed.
Market Trader Pop-Ups
Using Accelerated Towns Programme funds, new market trader pop-ups were sourced to incorporate the District Council's branding. The introduction of these pop-ups aims to create further space within the markets, as well as tie to market together. For further information on the dates and times of the markets that take place in Huntingdonshire, please visit our Markets page.
Upgrade/Replacement of Public Toilets
The bus station toilets in Huntingdon and St Ives have been completely revamped. The facilities have now been brought up to date and offer toilet facilities in the centre of two of our market towns, for use by public transport users, as well as town centre visitors.
Ramsey Civic Hub
A Civic Hub will be created in the centre of Ramsey which will be utilised by the Town Council and local organisations once complete. Work on the refurbishment commenced in Summer 2022 and has been completed.
St Ives Market Square
In lieu of a continued rollout of further parklets in St Ives, proposals have been developed for enhancements to St Ives Market Square. Further update soon.
This project is closely linked to the delivery of an innovative retail hub in the Great Whyte area of Ramsey.