Welcome Back Fund – For High Streets and Seaside Towns

Melanie Richardson



A new £56 million Welcome Back Fund will help councils boost tourism, improve green spaces and provide more outdoor seating areas, markets and food stall pop-ups. Part of this funding will be allocated specifically to support coastal areas, with funding going to all coastal resorts across England.


Measures in short:


  • £56 million Welcome Back Fund to help boost the look and feel of high streets and seaside towns
  • Funding will help councils prepare for the safe return of shoppers and tourists, including employing extra staff to keep festivals and events covid secure
  • Pubs, restaurants and listed buildings given more flexibility to use their land to help more people meet up and enjoy themselves, including erecting marquees in pub gardens for the whole summer



The funding can also be used by councils to:


  • Boost the look and feel of their high streets by investing in street planting, parks, green spaces and seating areas to make high streets as beautiful and welcoming as possible
  • Run publicity campaigns and prepare to hold events like street markets and festivals to support local businesses
  • Install signage and floor markings to encourage social distancing and safety
  • Improve high streets and town centres by planting flowers or removing graffiti



Additional Changes:


Businesses such and pubs and restaurants will benefit from reduced restrictions and unfair parking ticket appeals process has been simplified:

  • Businesses such as pubs and restaurants, including where these premises are in listed buildings, will be allowed to use their land more flexibly to set up marquees and provide more outdoor space for diners as restrictions ease. They can be kept up for the whole summer rather than the 28 days currently permitted.
  • The government has also published its response to the Parking Code Framework which will curb unfair tickets and tackle cowboy parking firms through a new, simplified appeals process. Caps on private parking fines for millions of motorists are also set to be introduced



Support for the high street:


  • £350 million from the Future High Streets Fund to be invested in 72 areas across England to renew and reshape town centres.
  • Protections from the threat of eviction for businesses unable to pay their rent have been extended until the end of June 2021, helping businesses get back on their feet as restrictions lift across England.
  • The High Street Homes Permitted Development Rights will make it easier for disused buildings to be repurposed and provide housing.
  • The provision of public toilets is also being reviewed to ensure that there are appropriate facilities for visitors to town centres.
  • Through the £4.8 billion Levelling Up Fund, the £220 million Community Renewal Fund and the £3.6 billion Towns Fund the government is investing in long-term infrastructure projects to level up our towns and rural areas.



For more information & guidance on the Welcome Back Fund please follow the link below:





For more information on the Future High Streets Fund please follow the link below:



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