Falkirk district could benefit from £280 million Growth Deal

Falkirk Council leader Cecil Meiklejohn held positive discussions with Secretary of State for Scotland David Mundell over a Regional Growth Deal for Falkirk district
Falkirk Council leader Cecil Meiklejohn held positive discussions with Secretary of State for Scotland David Mundell over a Regional Growth Deal for Falkirk district

Falkirk district looks set to benefit from a £280 million investment as part of a Regional Growth Deal.

The local economy, environment and infrastructure could be boosted after productive talks were held between Falkirk Council leader Cecil Meiklejohn and Secretary of State for Scotland David Mundell at Westminster.

Since those talks took place, Mr Mundell has been sacked as Scottish Secretary by Boris Johnson after the new Prime Minister reshaped his cabinet yesterday.

Prior to that decision being taken, Mr Mundell offered regional Members of Parliament (MP) John McNally and Martyn Day assurances during a meeting of the House of Commons yesterday that the UK Government was committed to taking forward a deal that would see transport links, among other areas, improved.

The pledge was made after the MPs sought confirmation on the possibility of an agreement being reached with the Scottish Government.

Mr Mundell said: “After a very productive meeting with the leader of Falkirk Council, we are looking forward to the council submitting proposals by the end of August.”

Regional Growth Deals are agreements made between the Scottish Government, the UK Government and local authorities designed to bring about long-term strategic approaches to improving regional economies.

Reflecting on her discussion with the Secretary of State, Ms Meiklejohn said: “The meeting was organised at short notice and during the council recess but we have said all along, if there is a benefit to the people of Falkirk district we will be as flexible as we have to be to ensure their interests are advanced.

“Our proposals will be fine-tuned by the deadline date and will contain the views of our partners from the public, private and voluntary sectors who have already contributed much to the proposals. With the Scottish Government already pledging their 50 per cent share of the package, I believe we are close to the final pieces of the jigsaw coming together. I believe the Secretary of State has recognised the positive impact Grangemouth has on both the Scottish and UK economies.”

Angus MacDonald, Falkirk East MSP, said: “There is so much potential for inward investment within my constituency and the Growth Deal will help inject a very welcome, significant boost to our local economy.”