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Chard students help inform research for Chard Regeneration Scheme

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Geography students from Holyrood Academy in Chard have been finding out what appeals to the younger generation in the town and have fed the results back to South Somerset District Council to consider as part of the Chard Regeneration Scheme.

Representatives from the Chard Regeneration Board attended the school in November, where students presented their findings from a survey that was completed by the hundreds of students who take geography at the school.

Survey results

What students most liked about Chard:

  • The majority of students liked the parks and open spaces in the town.
  • Only half of the students were happy with the shops in the town centre
  • Students liked that there were lots of places to eat and drink but would prefer different options

What students don't like about Chard:

  • Students think there isn't enough things for young people to do in the town
  • The majority of students dislike the skate park
  • A large proportion of students thought there was more than enough pubs in the town
  • There is a lack of CCTV
  • Half of the students did not like the Cresta swimming pool

What students would like to see in Chard:

  • Better shops came out a clear favourite
  • More police and CCTV
  • The results showed a desire for activities / things to do for young people

Would students use a new leisure centre:

  • 286 students said yes
  • 62 students said no

The results from the survey were presented to the Chard Regeneration Scheme Board for consideration and will be shared with the architectural team when they are appointed. South Somerset District Council will continue to engage with pupils for the duration of the project to ensure that the Council delivers a scheme that will appeal to the future generation.

Councillor Jo Roundell Greene, Portfolio Holder for Environment& Economic Development at South Somerset District Council said, "The presentation the school children gave us was so informative and was full of ideas for the board to consider going forward. It was certainly interesting to hear what they all thought of Chard, both the positives and the negatives!

"We must thank the students who compiled the survey, collated the responses and presented to us for their hard work. We will certainly be using their data as we progress with the Chard Regeneration Scheme and consider what facilities we could provide on the site."

Above: The presentation given by the students to the Chard Regeneration Board Members.

A public consultation was held earlier this year in Chard, with more than 500 residents attending to give their feedback on what they thought of the ambitious plans to regenerate the town centre and learn more about the Chard Regeneration Scheme.

The scheme focuses on regenerating the Boden Mill site in the centre of the town, and proposed components could include a new leisure centre and swimming pool, alongside a blend of housing and commercial developments. In addition to this, the scheme proposes a number of other measures to boost business in the town, support events and revitalise the market.

Here are five things you've told us about the proposals so far:

  • You would love to see more green and open spaces for the community where public events could be held
  • You would like to see a new leisure centre including a swimming pool provided alongside affordable attractions for young people
  • You would like more places to eat and socialise
  • The idea of creating a community hub is something you would welcome
  • You would like to see the scheme incorporate ways of helping small, independent retailers and welcomed the idea of a covered market

You can find out more information on the Chard Regeneration Scheme on our website.

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