The Yorkshire Society, contractor Carillion and QS Gleeds launch financial product to fund regeneration projects

Contractor Carillion and QS Gleeds are teaming up with a civic society to launch a fund for the public to invest in regeneration schemes, which is backed by the Duke of York.

The Yorkshire Society, a non-political body that promotes the county, is working with Carillion and the British Urban Regeneration Association to launch the People’s Regeneration Fund. This will encourage people to invest in bonds that would be spent on regeneration.

The fund is believed to be the first of its kind in the UK, and could result in hundreds of millions of pounds being ploughed into schemes across the UK. It has the blessing of Richard McCarthy, the head of sustainable communities at the Office of the Deputy Prime Minister, and a number of MPs.

The team only intends to provide funding for regeneration projects that can demonstrate they will create sustainable communities and produce a solid financial return.

The fund is the brainchild of Keith Madeley, who spent 25 years as a financial adviser before becoming head of the Yorkshire Society. Madeley sees the model as a way for ordinary people to make ethical investments rather than invest in shares.

The Yorkshire Society is keen to use the investment for county projects such as the regeneration of Bradford, but insists that the product could be used to fund national and even international schemes.

Regeneration has a higher return than traditional investments

Trevor Greenwood, spokesperson

Financial services companies HBOS, Insight and Friends Provident are in talks with the team about developing the financial product.

Trevor Greenwood, a spokesperson for the Yorkshire Society, said the fund would aim to offer a higher return than other investments. He said: “Regeneration tends to have a higher return than traditional investments and we would aim to match any existing product.”

f Richard McCarthy interviewed pages 30-32

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