A £1 billion investment package is set to be a ‘game changer’ creating more than 1,000 jobs and giving Chesterfield a ‘modern awakening’, it is claimed.
The Derbyshire town is set to benefit from a £400million Peak Resorts tourist attraction, described as a flagship that will ‘put Chesterfield on the map’.
The leisure, health, sport and education resort will be located on the Birchall Estate at Unstone on the edge of the Peak District and has been touted as one of the UK’s flagship leisure and tourism attractions.
A total of £320million will be invested in Chesterfield Waterside, £88million at Markham Vale business centre and £55million in Northern Gateway developments.
Markham Vale – part of which sits within Sheffield City Region Local Enterprise Partnership’s Enterprise Zone – has also secured a further £7.6 million of funding, enabling additional areas to be opened up for development.
The funding follows £14 million of Government money last year which enabled Markham Vale to expand its business park plans by 81 acres, widen Erin Road, put in place utility infrastructure and construct 100,000 square feet of new industrial buildings. The completed project could create 2,100 jobs by 2022.
Coun John Burrows, leader of Chesterfield Council, said: “Chesterfield used to be a heavy industry town but we are now having our modern awakening.
“We punch well above our weight here in Chesterfield and the news that over the next few years the town will benefit from £1 billion of investment is very exciting.”
Described as a ‘game changer’ by council chief executive Huw Bowen, the plans have also drawn support from businesses.
Vittorio Risorto, owner of the town’s Calabria coffee bar, said: “The recent discussions around town centre living are exciting news for my business and any others that have got anything to do with Chesterfield’s night-time economy.
“The town centre has a thriving day time economy and it would be great to see this replicated in the evening.
“We’re looking forward to seeing how that will develop however we all need to get on the back of it and support all the initiatives that have been discussed.”
Laura Pain, small business manager at Mitchells accountants, added: “It’s wonderful news for Chesterfield at the moment. The billion pounds worth of investment can only help small businesses with the commercial units that become available through grant funding. This really will help make Chesterfield great.”
Jillian Mitchell, director of Project Logistics Architecture, said: “I’m very optimistic about Chesterfield’s future. One way I think Chesterfield could continue to thrive is if it invests in quality design, both in the town centre and in the surrounding districts.”