Fr Adam Gaunt, Rector of Loftus-in-Cleveland, and Carlin How with Skinningrove has congratulated church member Marshall Best, who chairs the Loftus Regeneration and Future High Streets Bid Group (including two further church members), on the Boxing Day announcement that the small Redcar & Cleveland Borough town is to to receive nearly six million pounds in Government funding to regenerate its High Street.

Loftus is one of 57 towns to succeed in their bid to central government’s Future High Streets Fund.

  • Pictured: Loftus High Street from the tower top at St Leonard's Church

The offer is for a minimum of £5,833,628 with a potential £3 million investment from the Tees Valley Combined Authority, and £500,000 from Redcar & Cleveland Borough Council; bringing the total potential investment to a remarkable £9,333,628.

Fr Adam said, “This is absolutely wonderful news for our small town and for our wider parish.”

“This success comes after over ten years of hard work by members of our community and civic leaders, proactively driving the regeneration of our town and parish. Work began a decade ago with the composition of the Loftus Community Plan, which was two years in the making and was published in 2012. The community has subsequently applied for a number of funding streams, but has never been this successful.

“I am personally delighted that three members of our church family at Saint Leonard’s have sat on the Bid Group; this is nothing short of historic news for our parish!”

“I wish to take this opportunity to thank everyone in the community, our civic leaders, and local authority officers, who have been instrumental in getting Loftus Parish this remarkable Christmas present!”

“This fantastic news demonstrates what can be achieved when communities work together for the common good, and after a difficult year for everyone, this good news provides our community with fresh hope and firm foundations for the future.

“Merry Christmas!”