A MAJOR revamp of Angel Place and the city’s market has been billed as a fantastic opportunity to attract more visitors to Worcester.
Ten weeks of regeneration at the city centre site is set to begin on September 1 and a new operator to run all of the city’s markets is now being sought.
The plan is to remove the existing fixed market stands and put higher quality, flexible and movable stands in their place in the middle of Angel Place so shops on either side are more visible with an opening date penned in for December.
The square will also be re-paved and spruced up but it will remain open during the revamp.
The £550,000 project will be jointly paid for by Worcester City Council, if approved by the cabinet next Tuesday (July 29), Worcestershire County Council and The Crown Estate, owners of CrownGate Shopping Centre.
Council bosses have said when it re-opens in time for the busy Christmas period, it will present an exciting, more inviting proposition to shoppers and traders and forge better links with the rest of the city centre.
Councillor Marc Bayliss, Worcester City Council cabinet member for economic prosperity, said: “This is a fantastic opportunity to create a dynamic, exciting market that will work better for shoppers, market traders and all city centre businesses.
“With proposals also being drawn up to revamp Cathedral Plaza, this is another big vote of confidence in Worcester city centre.”
The Crown Estate currently holds a lease to the market site at Angel Place, which it has agreed to surrender to the council to enable the regeneration to come forward.
Another plan in the pipeline is from 2015, the Victorian Christmas Fayre will be run by the company that secures the new market contract.
The move has been backed by Herefordshire & Worcestershire Chamber of Commerce, which will organise this year’s fayre.
Mike Ashton, the organisation’s chief executive, added: “This exciting new approach to providing a market for Worcester will build on improvements to the city centre in recent years.
“We are looking forward to working alongside the new market operator for the benefit of Worcester businesses and shoppers and continuing our role to attract tourists to the city.”