Boden Mill site plans to be unveiled at Chard consultation event that's open to all
Details of the plans for the Boden Mill site, which includes the first concept for the new leisure centre, will be revealed at a public consultation event taking place on Saturday 16 March.
The exciting event will take place at the Guildhall on Fore Street in Chard between 10am and 1pm, where you will get the chance to have an update on the progress of the Chard Regeneration Scheme and have your say about the proposals for the Boden Mill site before designs are finalised and a planning application submitted.
Chard Regeneration focuses on revitalising the town centre including bringing the Boden Mill site back in to use to support the town centre. SSDC undertook initial consultation on the options for Chard Regeneration Scheme in June to September 2018, including a launch event where over 500 residents attended, together with other consultation events and activities over the summer. Following overwhelming community support the proposals for the Boden Mill site focus on community uses and 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.
What has happened so far?
Since the close of consultation at the end of September 2018, SSDC and partners have been working to take forward the scheme including the appointment of development partners and architects to help build a brand-new leisure and community facility at the Boden Mill site.
Alliance Leisure were appointed as leisure development specialists and have been working with multi-award winning architecture and building consultancy practice, AHR, whose Bristol team have bought the project forward from concept to design.
Council Jo Roundell Greene, portfolio holder for the Chard Regeneration Scheme and Deputy Leader of South Somerset District Council, said: “This is a really exciting development in the Chard Regeneration Scheme because it’s the first time that the public will get to see what is planned for the Boden Mill site.
“We have listened to the feedback obtained at previous consultation events, where you told us that you wanted to see a new leisure centre, and have implemented plans to deliver this. We really hope to see as many people as possible at the event on Saturday 16 March.”
South Somerset District Council are keen for as many people to see the proposals as possible.
Here's a brief guide to what is proposed as part of the Chard Regeneration Scheme:
New Leisure Centre and Swimming Pool
A brand new leisure centre is suggested in the plans, on the former ACI factory site, that would include improved facilities for the local community and visitors. Proposed facilities could include a swimming pool, gym, café and studio space. This aims to provide a high quality, modern, new development to support health and wellbeing for residents, and increased footfall from people visiting the town.
Within the proposals, the Boden Mill itself is envisioned as a cultural and public sector hub, with everything the community needs in one space. The ground floor could include a variety of services, such as the library, museum, a learning hub and a customer hub where residents can speak to their local team.
The Council believes that public space in the town centre could be even better so that the community can enjoy it to the full. With this in mind the proposals suggest a new, attractive, open public space in the town that the community can use for a variety of purposes and functions. This versatile space could be used by the community as a place for social gatherings, public art, family play areas, and community events. There will also be space allocated for car and coach parking.
There is also potential to consider different elements within Boden Mill site and the public space, including a health facility, business units, a covered market and a play area.
Watch the video below to see how pupils from Holyrood School in Chard have been getting involved: