For immediate release:
LEVELLING UP? LETTING DOWN
The second tranche of the UK Government’s Levelling Up fund has announced its successful bids – with none in South Lanarkshire.
It comes after South Lanarkshire bids were snubbed in the first round of the funding in 2021.
The Levelling Up fund, alongside the UK Shared Prosperity Fund and the Community Renewal Fund, replaced different sources of EU funding post-Brexit but has come under criticism from the Scottish Government and local MSP Clare Haughey.
Within the local Levelling Up bid, plans were included to continue with and step up the remediation of Shawfield from historical chromium contamination.
Glasgow City Council also missed out under the scheme, whilst Rishi Sunak’s constituency benefitted from £19 million.
Ms Haughey was scathing in her view of the Levelling Up announcement, saying:
“The UK Government’s Levelling Up agenda is incoherent, bypasses the Scottish Parliament, and fails to address Tory cuts, the financial loss due to Brexit, or lost EU funding.
“EU funding in the past helped with the re-opening of Rutherglen Town Hall, supported the creation of the Shawfield SMART Bridge, and provided funding to Rutherglen and Cambuslang schools for language training projects.
“Unbelievably, Rishi Sunak’s wealthy, rural constituency was awarded £19 million in Levelling Up funding yet Rutherglen, Cambuslang and the entirety of South Lanarkshire received nothing, not a single penny.
“It is staggering given that parts of this constituency fall within the most deprived 5 percent in Scotland and we have a history of industrial decline, from the job losses at Clydebridge Steelworks to the closure of both the Hoover factory and more recently the 2 Sisters’ facility.
“Quite simply, the Tories would rather support their own than invest in South Lanarkshire.”