A major milestone has been reached with the foundations being installed for the new business centre in New Romney.
Breem Construction, the contractors building the Mountfield Road centre, began the initial groundwork in December and the first concrete for the building's foundations has just been poured.
The hub is designed to provide flexible workspace for small businesses with the potential to create employment in the Romney Marsh area by attracting new companies to the area, including those who might be currently operating online from home.
Creating the £2 million centre has been made possible through Folkestone & Hythe District Council securing a funding package with the not the profit regeneration company East Kent Spatial Development (EKSDC) and the Nuclear Decommissioning Authority's (NDA) socio-economic programme.
Councillor David Wimble, F&HDC Cabinet Member for Economic Development, said: "It is exciting to see this excellent project get off the ground. It has been a fantastic partnership approach and this inward investment underlines how important Romney Marsh is to the district and is a great example of the council working alongside partners like Magnox on a project that will bring much needed jobs to the town."
Councillor Patricia Rolfe, Chair of the Romney Marsh Partnership and the New Romney Coastal Community Team, said: "To see the results of such pro-active partnership working progressing so well is wonderful. It is another step forward in the ongoing efforts to develop and improve the area which we hope will reap great rewards in assisting entrepreneurs to develop their businesses and help sustain the economy on the Romney Marsh for many years to come."
F&HDC and East Kent Spatial Development Company (EKSDC) are contributing equally to the development by each funding £735,000 of the cost.
The NDA grant is meeting £500,000 of the cost of the construction of the centre and providing a further £205,238 to allow a business adviser to be based in the centre for four years to support local businesses.
Debbie Spalding of EKSDC said: "The EKSDC are excited to be working in partnership with Folkestone and Hythe District council in the delivery and management of this new business hub which will provide high quality business space to the area."
Construction of the building is due to be completed in October and ready for the first businesses in January 2022.
Carl Gregory, Director of Breem Construction, said: "We are pleased to be working on this rewarding project that sits at the heart of the community. The centre will be an asset to Romney Marsh, creating new and exciting opportunities for local businesses whilst boosting the local economy for generations to come."
Photograph courtesy of Andrew Cruttenden, Martello Building Consultancy.
Date published: 23 February 2021