Sunday, 2 December 2012

Fund will give facelift to town centre

A fund has been set up to tackle grot and grime and give Northampton town centre a new year facelift.
The £50,000-fund will be used on fairly simple improvements that will freshen up the appearance of the town centre and create a more appealing environment for businesses and visitors.
Northampton Town Centre BID will be contributing to the fund and it is hoped that work can begin early in the new year. 
Both Northampton Borough Council and Northampton Town Centre BID are surveying the town centre to draw up a hit-list of items that can be tackled quickly and will have a big impact on the overall appearance. Feedback from businesses and other organisations is also being incorporated into the improvement action plan.
Cllr Mackintosh said that the fund was intended to bring forward short term improvements including tidying up signage; deep cleaning pavements; providing new bins and repairing, replacing and repainting street furniture. 
"Our plan is to give the town an immediate lift and complement longer-term regeneration projects such as the St John’s student accommodation, the new bus interchange, Project Angel and the Grosvenor Centre improvements that will bring a real boost to the town centre,” Cllr Mackintosh said.
"Times are tough for all towns but we are working hard with our partners to create conditions where business can invest and grow and make our town somewhere people want to spend time. We are lucky that we have a major regeneration programme taking place, but that doesn’t happen overnight. This fund will tackle quick issues that will have a major impact on the face of Northampton.” 
Work is expected to begin in January.
Stephen Chown, Chair of the Northampton Town Centre BID, pledged that the BID would be contributing to the fund.
He said:
 "The BID has already done work in the Drapery and the Market Square. We have some beautiful and high-quality heritage buildings in Northampton and just a small amount of additional work would give the heritage centre a big lift.  We are all striving to create conditions where people view the town as a great place to visit and the BID is keen to get the work started as soon as possible.”