PMQs: Will businesses in Harrogate and Knaresborough have a say on Future High Street Fund?

The Government's 2018 Budget revealed a £650 million funding pot to help support the nation's High Streets, but will local businesses in Harrogate and Knaresborough be able to help decide where it is spent?

Businesses could work with local councils to help decide where funds are spent

Following the delivering of the budget earlier this week MP for Harrogate and Knaresborough, Andrew Jones, asked the Prime Minister, Theresa May, how the Future High Streets Fund could function at the weekly session of Prime Minister's Question.

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He said: "High streets are the centres of our communities, and they have a social as well as an economic function, but the internet has changed everything. That is why I welcome the levelling of the playing field announced in the Budget this week through the cut in business rates and through the future high streets fund, but will local businesses in Harrogate and Knaresborough be able to work with the local council to decide how that money is spent?

Alongside the introduction of a 'new taskforce and expert advice' Mrs May said it would be possible for businesses to work with authorities like Harrogate Borough Council.

She said: " I thank my hon. Friend for highlighting the help that we are providing to the high street through our future high streets fund. As he says, this will enable local areas to develop and fund plans to make their high streets and town centres fit for the future.

"We will be supporting local leadership with a high streets taskforce, giving high streets and town centres expert advice on how to adapt and thrive, and it will be possible for local businesses to work with their local authorities to develop the plans that will indeed ensure that we continue to have plans for the high street that are fit for our towns and cities."