WEST Midlands Mayor Andy Street has said he's "confident we will be able to bounce back quickly" after big funding pledges to help the region in today's budget.

The Mayor was given a name check in the House of Commons earlier today (Wednesday) as Chancellor Rishi Sunak announced a nationwide coronavirus support package to help protect the region’s businesses and jobs, including the extension of the furlough scheme until September and a tax ‘Super Deduction’ for businesses that invest.

Mr Sunak also announced a further £225m of investments to back some of the region’s key schemes including new rail stations and the re-opening of old railway lines in the Black Country and south Birmingham.

He also announced support for a UK Central Hub – a major housing and commercial development scheme around the forthcoming HS2 Solihull Interchange near Birmingham Airport, £116m for the regeneration of struggling town and city centres in the West Midlands Combined Authority (WMCA) area and a £10m Wolverhampton-based Government taskforce to work with the WMCA in developing new construction technologies including low carbon, energy efficient homes.

Among the funding pledges for towns and cities was £19million for Rowley Regis.

Andy Street, Mayor of the West Midlands, said: “The Chancellor has done exactly what we asked of him, and set out clear and wide-ranging support to help see West Midlands businesses and the self-employed through to the end of the roadmap and into the recovery stage.

“I am particularly pleased to see our asks for the West Midlands responded to so well, with significant cash for reopening old railway stations and lines, reviving town and city centres, and making the most of HS2 with the cash to get the incredibly ambitious plans for UK Central in Solihull off the ground.

“The pandemic has really hurt the West Midlands economy, but with the measures announced today, alongside our local plans, I am confident we will be able to bounce back quickly and start getting people back into work.”