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Groundbreaking ceremony for Cathedral Quarter

The Homes and Communities Agency (HCA) has revealed a groundbreaking ceremony has been held to mark the start of construction works at Blackburn's Cathedral Quarter.Five years in the planning, the new £30 million project will see major regeneration works for the area and will include the creation of a Premier Inn hotel, a range of restaurants and other retail outlets, a library, public square, bus interchange and landscaped gardens in the heart of the city.It will create approximately 350 jobs and promises to give a major boost to the north-west city over the coming years, with the Clergy Court development providing new housing to meet the local community's ongoing demand for more homes.This will be the first major residential development in the historic Cathedral Quarter since the 16th century and also aims to deliver a range of new properties for business use to further boost the local economy.Andrew Dewhurst, director of Maple Grove, said: "We are very pleased to see this project finally come forward to the construction stage. We all recognised the importance of this investment to Blackburn and our partners have worked very hard through challenging economic times to ensure the scheme does become a reality."The Cathedral Quarter scheme is being part-funded by the HCA, the European Regional Development Fund and Lancashire Enterprise Partnership from the government’s Growing Places Fund.One of Lancashire-s most important cultural assets, Blackburn Cathedral, will remain the major focal point of the area, with all work to be carried out by Maple Grove Developments - part of the Eric Wright Group.Representatives from Maple, the HCA, the cathedral and Blackburn and Darwen Council attended the ceremony that was held today (November 11th) in the grounds of the religious building.Deborah McLaughlin, executive director for the north-west at the HCA, concluded: "The Cathedral Quarter will be a major boost for Blackburn so it is great news that work is now underway." 

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