A BRIGHT new decorative shroud has been placed around the scaffolding of the fire-hit Cupola House in Bury St Edmunds.

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The design features windows and brickwork and, according to traders and businesses, has been widely welcomed and has helped to improve the street scene of the area.

It replicates the former Strada restaurant which was destroyed in the fire on June 16 and is an exact replica of the fascia of the building.

David Clarke, of Hadleigh-based Richard Jackson Ltd and project engineer for the rebuild of the historic 17th-Century landmark, said the shroud was likely to be in place until next April while work continues at Cupola House.

“It does make a big difference to the area and it is a lot better there now,” he said.

Mr Clarke explained that photographs had been used to create the design which is now draped over the scaffolding.

Kate Palliser, who owns the nearby boutique shoe shop Scarlett, said she was pleased with the new look.

“We think that it’s great and has been widely welcomed by many people in the street. I think that it’s very attractive.”

And Mark Cordell, chief executive of the town centre business improvement group Bid4 Bury added: “It’s a real success and has made a big difference to The Traverse and general area nearby.”

The fire that devastated the building started in the basement kitchen, spreading through the building’s ventilation system. The Grade I listed building was built in 1693 for rich apothecary Thomas Macro and his wife Susan, whose initials were on the weather vane on top of the roof’s cupola.

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