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Town’s future enters the next phase

By Josh Thomas

The public will soon be given a chance to have their say on the future of Haverhill.

The second phase of the town centre masterplan is underway and people will be able to see and comment upon what could be in store for the town.

The first phase, which was completed after a long consultation with members of the public, was approved unanimously at St Edmundsbury Borough Council on May 28.

More than 200 members of the public contributed to the consultation.

“The response was incredible,” said Matthew Lappin from independent planning experts David Lock Associates who have created the draft master plan for Haverhill town centre. “Normally, we would be expecting no more than 30.”

The ideas for reinvigorating the town centre include improving Jubilee Place with cafes and retail units, conecting the area, across Ehringshausen Way, with the cinema and leisure centre.

There are also plans to open up parts of Chauntry Mills in the High Street to public access, building on the success of the nearby marketplace to create a vibrant quarter. There are also plans to develop an urban village on the site of the Wisdom factory in Duddery Hill.

“I’ve lived in Haverhill for 19 years,” said Sarah Howard, chairman of One Haverhill. “The place is constantly improving.

“Haverhill is going to expand. More people are moving in. There will be the things here they need. It won’t just be a dormitory town.”

Councillor Alaric Pugh was excited about the potential improvements that could be made to the town and noted the level of enthusiasm that surrounded the project.

“I just find it so exciting,” he said. “Local people have had their input and that has all been listened to.

“The next stage of consultation will only improve the proposals.”

Members of the public can now see the plans for the town and can feed back on them.

Plans, artist’s impressions and ideas will all be on show for people to have their say on.

People can participate in the next stage of the consultation at 12pm on Tuesday, June 16 at the Haverhill Chamber of Commerce. A drop in session will be held at Haverhill Arts Centre on June 20 between 10am and 5pm.

Information will be available from Castle Manor’s stand at the Recreation Ground on June 27.

Information will be available at the Leiston Centre’s morning club between 10am and 11am on June 29. Staff at Sanofi will be able to comment on the plans on the same day between 11.30am and 2pm.

On July 3, Information will be available at the Chalkstone Community Centre at 10.30am.

On July 8, information will be presented at the Wednesday for Women event at the Leiston Centre at 10.30am.

Tesco staff will have their say in the Tesco canteen betwen 11.30am and 2pm on July 8. On July 11, masterplan information will be available from Haverhill leisure centre’s coffee shop from 9am to 1pm. On July 14, information will be avilable at Samuel Ward Academy’s canteen at 12pm.

The town will also be visited by the town centre masterplan bus, which will be on the market square between 10am and 5pm on July 2, July 3 and july 4. See www.haverhillecho.com for full options. Visit www.onehaverhill.co.uk to see the plans for the town.

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