Vision for Barnstaple will guide development and open up funding opportunities

Posted on: 6 August 2018

North Devon Council is developing a vision for Barnstaple town centre, to ensure a coordinated approach to regeneration and development in the town.

At an Executive meeting today (Monday 6 August), members agreed to the release of £20,000 of Section 106 funds for town centre enhancement from the Anchorwood Bank development to cover the cost of producing the vision document. As with previous allocations of this funding, Barnstaple Town Centre Management will be consulted at their next meeting. Historic England will be contributing a further £10,000 towards a Conservation statement for Castle Mound, which will form part of the vision.

The document will help shape the future of the town centre. A number of regeneration projects are in the pipeline or already underway in Barnstaple and a clear vision for the town will ensure these projects are well coordinated and working towards the same goal.

Having a vision document is also a requirement when bidding for external funding, so the document will unlock opportunities to apply for funds to make improvements to the town. Some of the strategic projects already underway or being planned include:

• the regeneration of Seven Brethren and Anchorwood Bank
• flood defence improvements
• a new car parking strategy
• possible future redevelopment of Queen Street/Bear Street car park
• the museum extension
• a new footbridge/cycle bridge across the Taw
• re-use of the Civic Centre

The emerging Local Plan includes a Barnstaple Spatial Vision and Development Strategy, which is a high-level strategic vision of the town as a whole, focusing on growth to meet housing and employment needs up to 2031. The new vision document will look in more detail at the commercial and historical centre of Barnstaple, including improved movement, public realm and overall design standards.

Executive Member for Economic Development and Regeneration, Councillor Pat Barker, says: “An overall vision for the regeneration of Barnstaple will identify what makes the town special and how we can make the most of development opportunities to ensure the town grows in a way that’s acceptable to those that work, live and visit here. It will focus on making the town stronger whilst at the same time preserving its unique character. We will be working with partner organisations to produce the document and consulting the local community before it is published to make sure we’ve got it right.”

The Vision will be prepared with the engagement of key stakeholders, including Barnstaple Town Council. Barnstaple Town Centre Management, Barnstaple Chamber of Commerce, Devon County Council, Historic England, Natural England and the Environment Agency. A wider consultation will also take place when the draft document has been produced, giving local residents and businesses the chance to comment on the vision.

1 comment on “Vision for Barnstaple will guide development and open up funding opportunities

  1. Helen Chugg says:

    The importance is to link the anchor wood development to the town …
    A dedicated covered walkway or even a novelty train idea based on the old curved bridge would make an incredible tourist attraction.
    We need much better maps on stands and tourist handouts… The ones done by the last company were inaccurate and useless.

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