Residents have their say on Bury St Edmunds multi-million pound masterplan

An artist's impression of a redevelped St Andrews Street North. Picture: DAVID LOCK ASSOC

An artist's impression of a redevelped St Andrews Street North. Picture: DAVID LOCK ASSOC - Credit: DAVID LOCK ASSOC

Residents, visitors and shoppers have been having their say on the future of Bury St Edmunds as the half-way point of the consultation on the town’s draft masterplan approaches.

An artist's impression of a pedestrianised Cornhill. Picture: DAVID LOCK ASSOC

An artist's impression of a pedestrianised Cornhill. Picture: DAVID LOCK ASSOC - Credit: DAVID LOCK ASSOC

The town centre draft plan has been shaped by the 1,100 people who told St Edmundsbury Borough Council what they felt the told needed earlier this year.

The multi-million pound plan, which includes removing buses and traffic from behind the Arc shopping centre and the creation of a pedestrianised Cornhill and Buttermarket, hopes to build on the success of the town as a centre for shopping and tourism.

As part of the six-week consultation, members of the masterplan team have spoken to shoppers in Bury St Edmunds as well as visitors to the town’s leisure centre, with the aim of encouraging people to have their say on the masterplan.

Mark Cordell, chief executive of OurBuryStEdmunds, is part of the town centre working group leading on the masterplan.

Abbeygate Street, Bury St Edmunds. Picture: GREGG BROWN

Abbeygate Street, Bury St Edmunds. Picture: GREGG BROWN - Credit: Gregg Brown

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.

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“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 August 28 at The Food and Drink Festival.”

This Wednesday residents can 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.

There is also a chance to chat with some of the masterplan team in the Arc shopping centre on Saturday, August 19, from 9.30am to 5.30pm.

Other events will take place on:

• August 22, 10am to 5pm, Bury St Edmunds Library, Sergeants Walk

• August 23, 10am to 7pm, Asda, Western Way

• August 24, 10am to 7pm, Waitrose, Robert Boby Way

• August 28, 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 here.

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