A NEW initiative to renew and rejuvenate town centres across Greater Manchester has been launched.

Greater Manchester Mayor, Andy Burnham announced on Friday, his wish to move away from the ‘developer-led, green-field first approach of the past’.

The Town Centre Challenge invites all councils across Greater Manchester to nominate a town by the end of December, along with the plans they are seeking to deliver.

Mr Burnham said: “This new initiative is all about regenerating town centres across Greater Manchester which have felt left behind.

“The time has come to breathe new life into our proud towns and move away from developer-led, green-field first approach of the past.”

Greater Manchester has eight principal towns as well as around 20 smaller towns and over 50 further significant local and suburban centres.

Mr Burnham said: “This is part of the approach we are taking as we are re-writing the Greater Manchester Spatial Framework.

“But I want to make clear that this new approach will not mean that there won’t still be difficult planning decisions ahead and some green sites will still be needed.”

The initiative was launched on Friday in Bury town centre.