Surrey Heath Borough Council has awarded the first grant from the Kevin Cantlon Shop Front Improvement Scheme to PS Hairdressing in Frimley.
The Kevin Cantlon Fund offers grants funded by the Council to owners or occupiers of commercial buildings within the Borough to improve and enhance shop fronts, windows, doors and signage in a traditional and sympathetic manner, through repair of existing traditional features or reinstatement of historic architectural details.
The scheme, launched last year, is named in memory of the Council’s former Economic Development Officer, who sadly died in April 2017.
It aims to encourage the creation of attractive shop frontages across Surrey Heath, to enhance the character of the region, which could have significant economic benefits.
PS Hairdressing owner Philippa Sumner said: “My brothers Luke and Peter designed and painted the original shop sign in 2008, which was supposed to be temporary.
“After my brother Peter died in 2010 I couldn’t part with the sign, and did all I could to maintain it for as long as possible.
“But eventually it needed to be replaced, for the benefit of the business and the High Street, as it was looking rather forlorn!
“I discovered the Surrey Heath ‘Kevin Cantlon’ Shop Front Scheme, and found SHBC very helpful with the application I needed to submit.
“We’ve received many compliments for the new look of the salon, just in time for our 10th anniversary.”
Kevin’s wife, Natalie Cantlon, recently presented Philippa with the award and visited the newly-refurbished shop to see the result of the works.
The scheme is available to freeholder owners and leaseholder tenants (conditions apply), and prioritises small and independent businesses, with preference being given to those businesses with less than five locations in the UK.
High quality, well maintained frontages are more inviting for local residents and visitors, contribute towards a stronger sense of identity and enhance commercial values.
Businesses can apply for up to 50% of the costs of the works, to a maximum of £5,000. The business will need to fund the remaining amount.
SHBC Chief Executive Karen Whelan said: “Kevin was a much-loved officer of this Council, who possessed a tireless energy and enthusiasm for his work in the Surrey Heath business community.
“The Kevin Cantlon Shop Front Improvement Grant Scheme is a fitting legacy to his work, and we are delighted to have awarded our first grant from the fund to PS Hairdressing.
“I encourage other businesses from across the Borough to find out more about the scheme, and apply for funding for relevant improvements.”