TORFAEN council cabinet is set to discuss plans to submit an amended application to the Welsh Government’s Vibrant and Viable Places Programme, focusing on Pontypool town centre and canalside.

The council had applied for £13.6 million to further a “hugely significant regeneration project” but was awarded £8.2 million, and must now submit an amended proposal matching the reduction for approval by the minister.

The original programme – aimed at improving ‘failing town centres’, providing new houses and creating jobs in Communities First areas – was estimated at £80 million, but the new proposal is set at £50 million.

It is estimated it will still create 674 jobs and create or improve 246 homes. Investment levered in would exceed £51 million, the report says.

Included in the Pontypool upgrade is the refurbishment of Hypervalue and St James’ Church.

But improvements to Pontypool/ New Inn station are now being considered via other funding options.

The cabinet report said the size of the projects could still change before being finalised.

Councillors and traders called the project funding when it was announced, ‘a chance to create a legacy that will benefit residents, businesses and visitors for many years to come’.

Pontypool town trader and community councillor Gaynor James said it could “revitalise the area”.

The cabinet is to meet tomorrow.