Waterlooville Town Centre Vacant Shop Scheme - Call for Projects

Help transform empty shops in Waterlooville

We are looking for businesses and organisations who want to transform empty shops and underused spaces in Waterlooville Town Centre to create long-term solutions to currently high vacancy rates.

Eligible projects could receive a grant for capital works of up to £50,000.

Covid-19 has had a profound effect on businesses in the town centre. Lockdowns and restrictions have limited trade and we have seen a decline in footfall and an increase in vacancy rates. That along with spiralling energy prices and now the cost-of-living crisis we need to support our town centre and encourage new uses and create a vibrant and animated atmosphere.

Through a wide range of short-term interventions we are looking at for Waterlooville Town Centre, we will address its visual appearance, tackle vacancy rates and create green spaces and bring together a unique experience for both businesses and residents.

As part of these short-term interventions we have £140,000 of funding allocated to the Vacant Shop Scheme and are making an open call to businesses and organisations looking to secure funding for their customer facing businesses to assist with fitout costs. Proposals from retail, food and beverage, leisure, hospitality, arts and culture as well as professional services including health providers are being encouraged.

Eligible projects could benefit from a grant for capital works of up to £50,000. The proposed projects are required to be in the Waterlooville Vacant Shop Scheme Zone and can be from either start-up businesses or expanding businesses.


The deadline for expressions of interest was midnight on Sunday 10 September 2023. 

Expressions of interest will be evaluated to determine eligibility and the greatest potential to contribute to the future regrowth of Waterlooville Town Centre. These successful projects will then be asked to complete and submit a full application and demonstrate the long-term commercial viability of their project.


  • Projects must be in the Waterlooville Vacant Shop Scheme Zone.
  • Any funding proposals must be for capital (permanent renovations) works only and not ongoing costs up to £50,000 depending on the size of shop floor space to be transformed.
Waterlooville Town Centre Vacant Shop Scheme map



- Smaller vacant units under 1,500 sq ft up to £10,000

- Medium vacant units between 1,501-3,500 sq ft up to £25,000

- Larger vacant units over 3,501sq ft up to £50,000

  • Proposals must be from businesses new to the Waterlooville Vacant Shop Scheme Zone, and we are encouraging projects from business start-ups.
  • Businesses who are already trading in the Waterlooville Vacant Shop Scheme Zone can apply if they are taking on additional or larger premises.
  • Applicants will need to demonstrate that their business or project is sustainable for a minimum of three years.
  • Businesses must be customer facing.
  • We are encouraging proposals from retail, food and beverage, leisure, hospitality, arts and culture, professional services and organisations including health providers.
  • Funding proposals for £50,000 must display exceptionality.