Posted: Wed 8th Jul 2020

High Street to play key part in public realm change as council looks to support traders after lockdown for people living in or visiting the wrexham area
This article is old - Published: Wednesday, Jul 8th, 2020

Businesses on the town’s high street will be encouraged extend their trade outside under council pandemic recovery plans that including pausing the pavement license fee.

The waiving of the pavement license fee for the next 12 months is part of a package of council plans to help encourage shoppers into the town and boost businesses as lockdown measures start to ease.

This includes an eight week media campaign now underway online and on the airwaves, click and collect provision on the High Street and free parking in all car parks owned by the local authority.

Speaking at an executive board briefing earlier this week, lead member for economy, councillor Terry Evans, said: “The major one is allowing businesses to bring their businesses onto the High Street where we see from practical to do.

“The pavement license will be reduced from £80 to zero over a 12 month period.”

Asked about if this will mean the High Street will be closed off and if that would involve changes such as previously rumoured rising bollards, Council Leader Mark Pritchard said the local authority had applied for funding from the Welsh Government.

He also urged people to support the local economy and use Wrexham businesses.

Cllr Pritchard said: “Don’t go to Chester, don’t go over the border to Oswestry, come to Wrexham and spend your money here.

“The local businesses need it and they need you. Support Wrexham as a place and come and spend your money.

“We’ve had a tough time here in Wrexham and the businesses are crying out for your local support.”

Cllr David A Bithell, lead member for environment and transport, said: “Quite a lot of work has gone on with our legal department. When we start closing off streets, we need to make sure that we’ve done everything properly.”

“The plan is, effectively as soon as we get clarification from legal, is that from where the Wynnstay Arms is the plan is to close the street off.

“Initially there won’t be raising bollards because that takes some time and they’re not cheap to install. But initially, it’ll be a sign saying road closed from 6pm to 6am the next day.

“That will extend from effectively the top of where the roundabout is there by the Wynnstay Arms to the junction of Abbott Street.”

“So the idea of that is to allow businesses to come out and to make it effectively a pedestrian zone.”

“We do have to allow access to the church as well, so we will be having consultation with St Giles’ church to make sure that the church has access, and then also people with disabilities. We are doing an assessment to make sure that there’s adequate parking for people with disabilities.”

Cllr Bithell added: “We’re waiting for some revised regulations, but it’s in anticipation that we’re getting approval of the regulations in the near future

“Then obviously, the other big thing is trying to support the night-time economy really and to encourage people to come back into the town centre.”

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