Over 100 people attended a Highbridge consultation event on Wednesday (June 15th) to heard about a major project to regenerate the town centre.

A series of informaton boards outlining the plans were set up in Highbridge Community Hall, outlining the proposals, as pictured here.

Members of the project team were on hand alongside Sedgemoor District Council’s representatives and local town councillors and Highbridge’s Mayor, Cllr Lesley Millard, to hear feedback and ideas.

While the ‘concept proposals’ to uplift the town centre were broadly welcomed, there were some concerns raised about the reduction of parking spaces in Market Street and the Bank Street car park which could affect several local businesses, accessibility for disabled users, and a need to increase biodiversity in the green area next to the community centre.

We reported here last month that Sedgemoor District Council had launched a consultation period on the Highbridge Regeneration Framework (HRF), a new plan to regenerate Highbridge town centre by identifying where investment could help impove the town.

Highbridge regeneration project

Nick Tait, the council’s service manager for planning policy, told Burnham-On-Sea.com: “The event has been a positive one – I love it when we come to a place like this and are talking to people non-stop. I’d say that overall there’s been a lot of positivity, but we have noted some concerns about the impact on business and the whole point of doing this is to support the town centre, not undermine it, so we will take those points away. It is great that so many people turned up.”

He added that the consultation feedback will be considered in a bid for £20million of funding from the Government to cover schemes in Highbridge, Shepton and Cheddar. “The ‘Levelling Up’ funding bid has to be submitted on 6th July and we then hope to get a notification of success in the autumn. Then, if we are successful, the funding has to be spent or be fully committed by 2024.”

The consultation will inform Sedgemoor District Council’s bid to the Government’s Levelling Up Fund to support the regeneration of Highbridge town centre. This is part of a wider bid linked with Shepton Mallet and Cheddar.

The initial shortlist of projects identified by Sedgemoor District Council includes: 

  • Improvements to Market Street
  • Redesigning Bank Street car park
  • A new transport hub that includes public transport, bike parking, electric car charging and additional parking at Highbridge and Burnham railway station
  • Improving public transport links across the town and a better cycle route linking Highbridge and Burnham-on-Sea
  • Improving flood defences
  • Enhanced community hall facilities at Trowbridge Close

The consultation about the Highbridge Regeneration Framework remains open at https://highbridgeregeneration.co.uk/ until 24th June, 2022.

 
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