The journey towards revitalising Bicester Market Square is taking a significant step forward as Cherwell District Council begins its search for expert town centre regeneration consultants.
Published: Wednesday, 20th December 2023
Expected to be appointed in the coming months, the consultants will work with the council to shape plans for a forward-thinking, thriving town centre.
They will extensively study the town centre, looking at parking, traffic flows and pedestrian-friendly elements over several months. To support this work, they will engage with the local community, residents and businesses to develop ambitious proposals. A formal consultation will help finalise designs later in 2024 following this work.
One idea for the market square involves its transformation into a versatile space for community events. The recent success of the Armistice Day Parade held in November demonstrated its potential as an area for the community to gather.
Councillor Donna Ford, Portfolio Holder for Regeneration, said: "We’re excited to move our regeneration plans forward and find the right partners to help rejuvenate Bicester town centre. Essential to the success of this project is the input from our local businesses and residents, and our Bicester Town Centre project team has visited businesses in market square to talk about the project and explain how they can get involved.”
Local businesses have welcomed the news. Angela Connelly, owner and founder of Oréa Salon, commented: “It’s fantastic news that things are moving ahead. The regeneration of Market Square was the reason we chose to open our salon in market square as regeneration will make market square more desirable and bring more footfall.”
Maxine Reynolds, Office Manager at Breckon and Breckon, said: “We are happy to see that the market square is having some much-needed investment and are hopeful that this will support local businesses in the area and bring in more people. It’s an exciting time for Bicester.”
The regeneration project benefits from £4.25 million of funding from the council’s capital budget, with the original source of funding being a government grant for infrastructure in Bicester.
Residents and businesses keen on staying updated can sign up to receive news about the project.