A PROJECT to ease congestion in a South Lakeland village has received a £60,000 funding boost.

The Cartmel Township Initiative will use the money awarded by South Lakeland District Council (SLDC) through its Locally Important Projects (LIPs) scheme towards a number of infrastructure improvement projects in Cartmel.

Funding for the scheme is raised from the New Homes Bonus, which is money paid by central Government to the council based on the number of new homes built or brought back into use.

The Cartmel Township Initiative was granted £60,000 to kick-start activity on its ongoing project to tackle congestion issues.

“It has been a programme of study and work put together over the last few years to address some of the infrastructure problems,” said Cllr Chris Naylor, chair of Lower Allithwaite Parish Council.

He said the money would be spent on a variety of initiatives, including building a footbridge across the River Eea at Ford Road.

The parish council would also invest some of the money in new traffic regulation orders making changes to how parking was controlled in the village centre. It would also install bike racks to encourage more people to use bicycles.

The grant application will enable the Cartmel Township Initiative to employ professionals to draw up traffic management and parking proposals, that would be followed by an extensive public consultation before anything is implemented.

“We are hoping to kick start some of the proposals to get the ball rolling so we have some publicly identifiable work,” Cllr Naylor said.

“At the moment there is only one bridge across the river for pedestrians and cars and we are hoping the footbridge will make it easier for everyone to move about.

“We want to introduce some parking restrictions and some re-organisation of how the parking spaces are used for residents and visitors. We want to look at making some spaces long term and some short term to free up the centre of the village, which is where most of the congestion is.

“It is all about enhancing the visitor experience and local experience. Everything the money is being used for is for wider public use. Anyone who visits will benefit from the money spent.”

The funding has been welcomed by Cartmel and Grange West SLDC Cllr Mary Wilson, who said: “This demonstrates our commitment to localism and working in partnership with local communities on the issues that matter to them.

“I am delighted that this money has been awarded to such a key project for Cartmel and I hope it helps to make a real difference to the lives of residents and visitors to the village.’’