Units in Runcorn Shopping City have been refurbished to create a purpose-built Citizens Advice Centre and the new Halton Health Hub – in partnership with Warrington and Halton Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust (WHH).
The new facilities were funded by the Liverpool City Region Town Centre Fund, which provided £6 million – up to £1 million for each of the six local authorities – to support town centre regeneration plans.
The fund has supported masterplan strategies, public realm improvements, physical and digital infrastructure, business support, town centre management and events and marketing activities.
Steve Rotheram, Mayor of the Liverpool City Region, said:
“Being a member of the Liverpool City Region means that Halton can benefit from region-wide investments, like my Town Centre Fund. We’re targeting investment into projects, such as Halton Health Hub and Citizens Advice Halton, that are helping us to reimage and reshape our communities for the better.
To put it simply: projects like these might not otherwise have been possible before devolution, which has given areas like ours the opportunity to chart our own course and invest in schemes that will make a genuine difference to our residents’ lives.
I want every part of our area to be given an equal chance to prosper because, for far too long, too many communities across the North have been starved of any ambitious funding by governments of all stripes. This is real levelling up in action – and it’s one step closer towards my ambition of building a fairer, more equal future for the 1.6 million people who call our area home – where no one is left behind.”
The Halton Health Hub was developed in partnership with Warrington and Halton Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust.
It was also supported by over £500,000 in funding from Warrington and Halton NHS Trust with additional paediatric play equipment funded by £6,000 in donations from Halton Borough Council and One Halton.
The hub offers three clinical services: dietetics, orthoptics and audiology and aims to provide 72 appointments per week.
Halton Borough Council now also offers a flu and covid vaccination clinic and GPs have set up an acute respiratory hub service three days a week, with extended GP access due to start in February.
Further funding of £1.3m from NHS England’s Community Diagnostic Centre programme has been secured by the Trust to offer additional services including sleep studies, phlebotomy and ultrasound later in the year.
The refurbishment used £350,000 from the Liverpool City Region Combined Authority’s Town Centre Fund for Halton Lea, alongside funding from WHH, to create five consulting rooms and two diagnostic imaging rooms.
A former B&M shop has been completely refurbished, making it easier and more accessible for patients to attend appointments.