Shoppers, residents, visitors and workers have all been sharing their views on the future of Bury St Edmunds town centre.
We are nearing the halfway point in our six week consultation on the draft Bury St Edmunds town centre masterplan – a masterplan which has been shaped as a direct result of the feedback that we received earlier this year when we asked people about the issues facing the town centre both now and into the future, and how they could be addressed.
In the past two weeks members of the masterplan team have spoken to people shopping at Bury St Edmunds Saturday market, Sainsbury’s, Tesco, as well as visitors to Bury St Edmunds Leisure Centre – all with the aim of encouraging them to have their say on the draft masterplan.
There’s still plenty more to come not least at the Bury St Edmunds Food and Drink Festival at the end of the month, when you will find us in the Apex. You can also take part from the comfort of your home at www.westsuffolk.gov.uk/bsemasterplan where you can click on an interactive map to see the aspirations for each area, and fill in a quick questionnaire to let us know whether the draft masterplan has got it right.
Mark Cordell, chief executive of OurBuryStEdmunds which represents the interests of more than 400 town centre businesses, is part of the town centre working group that is leading on the masterplan.
He said: “The crucial thing for the businesses that I represent is that people are able to get into the town, whether by car, public transport, cycling or as a pedestrian – and that once here, they can get around safely, relax and enjoy spending their time here. With the housing growth that is occurring in Bury St Edmunds and beyond, it is vital that we have a masterplan in place to address the current issues and plan for the future. That is why it has to be bold and why it has identified several options for how future parking needs may be addressed.
It also sets out aspirations for improvements to Market Thoroughfare and pedestrianisation in a number of locations, which will of course look to strike the balance between shoppers and business needs.
“Bury St Edmunds is a successful market town with a strong mix of shops, culture, cafes and restaurants, heritage and the wonderful Abbey Gardens, all of which attract people from far and wide – and it is up to us all, not just those on the working group, but the residents of the town, the shop owners, staff, market traders, office workers, those that come here to shop or visit, to all get involved, have their say and help shape the future of the town that we all love. You can have your say at a number of events including on 28 August at The Food and Drink Festival.”
This Wednesday offers a chance for residents to find out more at a draft masterplan stall on Bury St Edmunds market from 7.30am to 4pm, followed by a stand in The Apex from 6pm to 8.30pm.
If you cannot make those then on Saturday 19 August there will be a chance to chat to some of the masterplan team in the arc shopping centre from 9.30am to 5.30pm.
Other events will take place on:
- 22 August, 10am to 5pm, Bury St Edmunds Library, Sergeants Walk
- 23 August, 10am to 7pm, Asda, Western Way
- 24 August, 10am to 7pm, Waitrose, Robert Boby Way
- 28 August, 10am to 4pm, Bury St Edmunds Food and Drink Festival (in The Apex)
More information on the draft masterplan including an interactive map and short questionnaire, can be found at www.westsuffolk.gov.uk/bsemasterplan
There are also displays and information points throughout the consultation where you can find out more information.
Details of our displays and information points are below.
- The Cloisters, St Edmundsbury Cathedral
- The Apex
- West Suffolk House
- Leisure Centre, Beetons Way
- Information leaflets and contact cards with the online links are available at:
- CAB Risbygate Street
- Moyse’s Hall Museum
- Bury St Edmunds Town Council offices
- The Athenaeum
- Skyliner Leisure Centre
- St Edmundsbury Cathedral information point
- Haverhill Arts Centre
More information will be posted throughout the consultation period on Twitter from @stesbc #bsemasterplan and Facebook at St Edmundsbury News
The Bury St Edmunds Town Centre Masterplan is being co-produced by a working group comprising representatives of OurBuryStEdmunds Business Improvement District, the Suffolk Chamber in Bury St Edmunds, Bury St Edmunds market traders, The Bury Society, the Bury St Edmunds Town Trust, St Edmundsbury Cathedral, Bury St Edmunds Town Council, St Edmundsbury Borough Council and Suffolk County Council, working alongside urban design and town planning specialists David Lock Associates and Peter Brett Associates.