Additional board meeting held to bring fresh ideas to Wincanton Regeneration
Since the Wincanton Town Centre Regeneration Strategy was approved in 2019, the Council has been through a substantial period of change. Proposals for a unitary Somerset Council have been confirmed and new County Councillors for Wincanton appointed.
South Somerset District Council, therefore, took the decision to hold an additional Wincanton Regeneration Board meeting on Monday 1 August. Chaired by recently appointed Area East Chair, Cllr Sarah Dyke, the meeting was an opportunity for attendees to offer fresh ideas and opinions about what should happen in the remaining months of the project.
One of the early priorities for the Board was bringing key empty premises in the town back into use. It has agreed to focus on this, as the key driver of regeneration in the town over the coming months. The Wincanton Regeneration Board will now seek approval for the proposed change of scope. Meanwhile, the proposals for the public realm enhancements will be passed to the new Somerset Council to be considered for future delivery after funding opportunities are explored.
Cllr Sarah Dyke said “feedback from partners and local people has informed our decision to focus on the re-use of empty premises in the remaining months of the project. As a District Council, we are committed to regenerating Wincanton town centre. The Town Centre Strategy set out ideas for the re-use of redundant buildings by introducing small scale mixed-use development, which offers the opportunity for commercial space and modest residential provision appropriate to the setting. We are excited to be advancing this work, which should bring about real change in Wincanton.”
To find out more about the Wincanton Town Centre Regeneration Strategy, visit our dedicated website: www.wincantonregeneration.com/
The Wincanton Town Centre Strategy was produced in 2019 following public consultation and engagement with key stakeholders. Public feedback informed the ‘vision’ which is for Wincanton town centre to become a place that:
- Is well used and a thriving place to live, work and visit.
- Has an enhanced retail, community and social function that encourages visits during the day and in the evening
- Makes more of the centres special cultural and heritage character through improvements to the public realm and buildings to attract investment into the town centre.
- Has a wider mix of uses, including commercial floor space and quality housing that supports enterprise, creativity and vibrancy.
- Will create a convenient and attractive destination for both local residents and visitors, using the unique assets of Wincanton town centre and the surrounding area.
A diverse range of initiatives will help to deliver the strategy objectives within three main themes:
- Broadening the mix of uses – includes engaging landowners of vacant premises, and under-used sites to promote owner driven re-use of the building or alternative uses appropriate to the town centre.
- Enhancing the attractiveness of the town centre - suggestions for modest interventions such as planting/greening schemes, work to align trading hours, and larger specific projects such as public realm improvements and a property grant programme.
- Creating a destination – this includes a variety of projects from one off events, marketing initiatives, partnership with local attractors, signage within and to/from and within the town.