Plans to help regenerate the town of Holyhead have taken an important step forward with news that a landmark building will soon be refurbished.
The former HSBC building has been bought by Môn Communities Forward thanks to a multi-million-pound bid to the UK Government’s Levelling Up Fund (LUF).
The successful bid, submitted by the Isle of Anglesey County Council, secured £22.5m of investment, including £17m from the Levelling Up Fund, and will deliver more than £54m in benefits to the local community.
The "Holyhead: A culture and heritage driven transformation" bid includes an exciting package of projects to increase employment; improve the town centre offer and visitor experience; increase footfall and spending; provide modern floor space to meet business needs and increase access to the arts, culture and leisure.
The three storey HSBC building will now be refurbished, as part of Môn CF’s Vacant Property Programme, which will help reverse the decline of the town centre and increase pride of place for residents.
Anglesey Council Leader and Economic portfolio holder, Councillor Llinos Medi, congratulated Môn CF on its purchase.
Cllr Medi said, “This is positive step forward in terms of the exciting package of projects which will be funded through the Levelling Up Fund. The former HSBC building is one of the largest and most prominent vacant properties in the town centre. Its purchase, completed earlier this month, will now allow Môn CF to forge ahead with their plans to refurbish the property to create new, sustainable community and business uses.”
She added, “The LUF funding, successfully secured by the County Council, will allow us to work with partners to realize a number of projects on behalf of the town of Holyhead and its residents.”
The Isle of Anglesey County Council is working in partnership with Holyhead Town Council, Môn CF, Ucheldre Arts Centre and the Church in Wales to deliver an exciting programme of works by March 2025.
These include a substantial extension to both the Ucheldre Arts Centre and Holyhead Town Council’s Empire Play Centre; renovation of St Cybi’s Church and further enhancements to the Breakwater Heritage Visitor Centre.
Môn CF’s Alun Roberts said, “Being able to buy the HBSC building is a real milestone for our Vacant Property Programme. It is a landmark building in the town centre but has been empty for quite some time.”
“The building will now be reconfigured into a mix of commercial uses, including a new extension to house a microbrewery. The works will also include maintaining some key architectural features internally as well as a major refit of the existing structure itself.”
Alun Roberts added, “We are excited at the prospect of breathing new life into the building. Working alongside partners, our aim is to bring some much-needed vibrancy into the town centre; ensuring it can be used by the community and businesses as well as making it an enjoyable destination for locals and visitors alike.”
The island’s largest town, Holyhead has some of the worst deprived neighbourhoods in Wales. The successful LUF bid will now see key local assets enhanced to make the area a better place to live and visit.
Endorsed by Virginia Crosbie MP, the Holyhead bid was closely aligned with the objectives of the Levelling Up White Paper and deemed the only one with a credible chance of support and success in the competitive bidding process.
Notes to Editors:
The key components of the LUF programme include:
- A substantial extension to the Ucheldre Arts Centre - to provide better facilities and greater capacity to enable this key cultural institution to grow its programme and reach more people.
- The renovation of St Cybi’s Church, the Grade 1 listed star of Holyhead’s heritage assets and Eglwys Y Bedd, which will expand into a community hub, helping local people and bringing more activity into the heart of the town.
- A substantial extension by Holyhead Town Council to the Empire Play Centre - the town’s main indoor attraction, to cater for increasingly higher demand and the renovation of the Newry Beach Frontages improving facilities for locals and visitors alike.
- Môn CF will embark on a property restoration programme, targeting some of the largest and most prominent vacant properties and creating sustainable vibrant new community uses, ensuring that these buildings are saved for future generations.
- The Isle of Anglesey County Council will extend the highly successful Townscape Transformation programme, refurbishing dilapidated town centre heritage properties helping to reverse the decline of the town centre.
- Further enhancements to the Breakwater Heritage Visitor Centre, including improvements to routes and public realm, routes and links from the Country Park back to the town centre, allowing more people to learn about the heritage of Holyhead, Holy Island and Ynys Môn.