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Wincanton’s public realm improvement schemes move a step closer

| Your Area East

Plans to improve appearance of Wincanton have moved a step closer following the latest meeting of Wincanton Town Centre Regeneration Board.

Its members recently discussed the advanced designs for proposed improvements in the town centre and concluded that the schemes that will provide the greatest benefit, and are affordable, should be progressed.

More than 200 people contributed to a public consultation held in May this year. The feedback showed overwhelming support for the quality of the environment in the town centre to be improved in order to complement the town’s history.

 Designs are being advanced for:

  • Market Place
  • Carrington Way
  • Central High Street

South Somerset District Council is now entering the technical design phase, which involves liaison with Somerset County Council which, as the Highways Authority, must approve the schemes before they are finally implemented.

About the schemes

  • Market Place

The scheme design for the Market Place will result in a much improved appearance for this important historic place. It will create a better space for pedestrians, safer crossing points, more planting areas and also has the advantage of retaining some of the existing parking provision.   

  • Central High Street

The public consultation showed strong support for the improvements to the central High Street where there has been a long held local aspiration to improve the narrow pavements, safety for pedestrians and reduce vehicle speeds.

  • Carrington Way

The design being taken forward will see what we’re calling a ‘light touch declutter’ on the western side of the Carrington Way junction,  with additional planting planned for the area in front of the library there will also be improved  crossing points at the junction. This scheme will extend to the east of the junction onto the High Street where there are plans for pavements to be widened, pedestrian crossing enhanced and two additional on-street parking spaces created.

This is an exciting step forward and once the necessary approvals are received, the intention is to invite tenders for these schemes later this year so works could start in 2022.

Councillor Henry Hobhouse, portfolio holder for Wincanton Town Centre Strategy, said: “The deliverability of the schemes and the feedback that has been given by members of the public has informed the approach we are moving forward with.

“As a District Council, we are committed to regenerating Wincanton town centre. That’s not just about trying to fill the empty shops, but we must also work on how the town centre looks so that it attracts more people and more businesses. We need to make improvements to the public spaces to provide a good experience so that people want to come to the town to live, shop and for socialising.”

Councillor Sue Shelbourn-Barrow, chair of Wincanton Town Council, said: “We are excited to hear the planned regeneration of our high street is moving forward to the next phase and look forward to seeing the first project completed.”

The overall regeneration programme aims to boost footfall and help create a more vibrant town centre, working with partners, in which Wincanton’s businesses can flourish. The strategy includes public realm improvements such as widening footways, introducing different surface dressings, better delineation of on street parking and planting schemes, proposals are tailored to individual locations.

You can find out more about the Wincanton Town Centre Strategy and the work we are doing on our website.


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