£100m fund to regenerate areas in need in Wales

A picture of Carl Sargeant outside a building with scaffolding on it Image copyright Rhondda Cynon Taf council
Image caption Carl Sargeant visited a regeneration project in Pontypridd

A new £100m regeneration programme aimed at "driving prosperity and building resilient communities" is set to be launched.

The programme aims to help areas "most in need" and will be unveiled by Communities Secretary Carl Sargeant on Friday.

Councils will be able to apply for funds over the next three years.

The Welsh Government said it wanted "to ensure prosperity is spread to all parts of Wales".

Mr Sargeant visited a scheme in Pontypridd on Thursday, which received regeneration funding over the last year.

A building in the town centre which was previously empty has been redeveloped and is now occupied by a retailer, while the upper floors have been transformed into affordable housing units.

Image copyright Rhondda Cynon Taf council
Image caption The building in Pontypridd was redeveloped into affordable housing units using regeneration funding

Mr Sargeant said: "There are particular challenges around tackling inequality and developing well-connected and sustainable communities in areas which are economically disadvantaged or blighted by earlier heavy industries.

"We also recognise there are different challenges in rural areas."

A National Regeneration Investment Panel will be created to ensure the investment is used effectively across Wales.

The Welsh Government will invite funding applications on a "rolling basis", meaning there is no specific deadline.

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