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First look at how Thetford’s riverside may be transformed

11:35 22 July 2011

The first line drawing of what the Anchor site could look like following regeneration works. 

Sketch: LSI Architects.

The first line drawing of what the Anchor site could look like following regeneration works. Sketch: LSI Architects.

Archant

This line drawing gives the first indication of how Thetford’s Anchor site might look following proposed regeneration works.

Proposals were put forward earlier this year to transform the Bridge Street site into shops, restaurants and even a cinema as part of a wider regeneration scheme in the town.

A final design will be settled on when interested parties have signed on the dotted line but the drawing is based on expressions of interest from restaurants, a cinema chain and a hotelier.

The sketch shows a pedestrianised river frontage with chairs and tables behind which a cafe, restaurant, hotel and cinema sit. There would also be a car park with five fewer spaces than the site currently has.

The site is currently home to the town’s bus station which could move to a site on Minstergate if plans go ahead.

A Breckland Council spokesman said the drawings gave a general impression of what could be achieved but stressed the scheme had not gone out to the market yet.

The sketches will go before the Moving Thetford Forward Board, which will then, if happy with the sketches, give approval to work up to planning application standard.

Around £1m has been allocated by Moving Thetford Forward for the 25,000 sq ft area although it is not yet known how soon work could begin.

The scheme is part of a wider aim to regenerate the town with 5,000 new homes, 6,000 new jobs, 40 hectares of employment land and improved education, health and transport services.

Meanwhile, a parish poll will be held within the next six weeks to determine whether people are in favour of relocating the bus station.

An overwhelming majority voted in favour of the referendum at a parish meeting on Monday.

• An information bus will visit Thetford to outline proposals being put forward for regeneration in the town.

The exhibition will detail plans put forward by Moving Thetford Forward for the Anchor Site and Minstergate, and offer the chance for people to ask questions.

The mobile public exhibition will take place on July 26 and August 6 at the Bridge Street Car Park between 10.30am and 12.30pm, Sainsbury’s car park between 12.30pm and 1.30pm, and Minstergate car park between 1.30pm and 3.30pm.

18 comments

  • To mjs:- I have never expressed anything other than my own opinion and do not profess to speak for any others and was simply saying that we have seen these plans before - Who consulted or commissioned what does not change the fact that nothing happened. The 2005 document was produced by Thetford Town Council in association with Breckland Council, Keystone and Norfolk County Council and can be found on the Breckland Council website as part of the Local Development Framework. On each page of the document you will find the words Moving Thetford Forward (which was a partnership formed from the previously mentioned parties) and the website www.movingthetfordforward.com was launched in January 2005.

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    sjskull

    Tuesday, July 26, 2011

  • Whatever are the planners thinking of? Has nothing been learned from the mistakes made in the 60s? If this 'transformation' of the Riverside side goes ahead goes ahead we will have matching monstrosities either side of the river.

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    caroline jacobs

    Friday, July 15, 2011

  • Page 43 does have that comment and also directly underneath 'bus station needs tidying up'. Later on in the same document talking of the MinstergateSt Nicholas Street site it states problems as 'poor pedestrian environment' and 'gradient across site' and shows an indicative use as 'retail led mixed use with potential for significant residential growth' whilst the Anchor site shows an indicative use as 'mixed use-residential with limited retail, bus station and parking'

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    sjskull

    Wednesday, July 27, 2011

  • How depressing to think that the planners and Breckland District Council think that this hideous ugly monstrosity will improve Thetfords historic core. Have no lessons been learned from the mistakes of the sixties? I refer to Well street once a beautiful Georgian gem, now an ugly red brick parade of shops, and Riverside walk an equally ugly precinct. But of course the proposed new buildings will be across the river from Riverside walk so we will have a matching pair of monstrosities to 'impress' visitors to the Town.

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    caroline jacobs

    Wednesday, July 13, 2011

  • Not gone out to the market yet and never will!!

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    Jacob Burns

    Thursday, July 14, 2011

  • Artist impressions shown here give the distinct impression that the Cosy Carpets building will form part of the bus station - This is simply not the case. When will MTF 'come clean' and present their full plans to the public?

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    sjskull

    Thursday, July 14, 2011

  • Proposals look good. Minstergate site is far superior location for bus station and will improve safety around grammar school area as well as providing much needed modern facilities for bus passengers. Redevelopment of the Anchor site is long overdue to remove the blight on this part of Thetford and provide a smart modern entertainment and leisure facility close to the town centre. It baffles me why there is so much reactionary objection to these schemes - don't the young communities of Thetford deserve these improvements and job opportunities now rather than have people talk about them for years so that, in the end, nothing happens?

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    JCW

    Saturday, July 23, 2011

  • Further to the comments made by SJ Skull. If I'm not mistaken the plans and artist impression you refer to was commissioned directly by Thetford Town Council. In 2005 MTF did not even exist. I’m tired of the small vocal minority suggesting they speak for all residents of Thetford. Thetford is in desperate need of regeneration and the ridiculous argument about where the bus station is located should not stop the redevelopment of two prime sites in Thetford. I will be voting YES to the relocation of the bus station in the fourth coming parish poll.

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    mjs

    Monday, July 25, 2011

  • Just out of curiosity where is the artist impression of the current bus station location IF the parish poll votes in favour of keeping it in it's current location and is to be regenerated ?

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    DavidC

    Friday, July 29, 2011

  • http:keystonetrust.org.ukcommunitiesindex.php?page=105 is a link to a page from 2005 where Thetford's town manager was employed as part of the MTF process and talks of the partnership involved and the document being prepared

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    sjskull

    Thursday, July 28, 2011

  • I have never claimed to speak for either a vocal minority or a majority view. Taking into account all of the practical issues - pedestrian safety, access, siting and then adding on costs, the current site wins. As for the arguments for retailhotelcinema proposals, they were not all there when the Academy was mooted. Comments referring to the waste of money on a referendum are not valid since we will have credible poll on the CURRENT plans. How much money has Breckland spent on consultants, pretty drawings (sometimes deliberately deceptive) and MTF buses which promoted MTFBreckland's view, at tax-payers' expense. The views of those claiming to speak for the majority should be welcomed, but, with the exception of Mr Kybird they preferred to remain anonymous behind initials and noms de plumes.

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    Anthony Lewis

    Wednesday, July 27, 2011

  • I haven't had a chance to lookunderstand the suggested plans for Thetford's riverside, but I must say I am impressed to hear Thetford is finally being developed in the right direction. I left the town over two years ago to try something else (Canada) and have decided to return to Thetford soon. I was impressed to see how many areas had improved during a short visit recently, and happy to hear there are plans for more improvements. It will always be hard to keep everybody happy, I realise that, but any improvements is better than none in my view.

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    Newpaz

    Monday, July 25, 2011

  • Page 43 does have that comment and also directly underneath 'bus station needs tidying up'. Later on in the same document talking of the MinstergateSt Nicholas Street site it states problems as 'poor pedestrian environment' and 'gradient across site' and shows an indicative use as 'retail led mixed use with potential for significant residential growth' whilst the Anchor site shows an indicative use as 'mixed use-residential with limited retail, bus station and parking'

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    sjskull

    Wednesday, July 27, 2011

  • Great another flat roofed building to along with the appalling 60s building which we've been told need demolishing. So many ifs and buts. Signing on the dotted line is miles away.

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    S Wilson

    Thursday, July 14, 2011

  • To JCW:- I agree with all sentiments expressed. Indeed the bus station has been awaiting investment for the past 30 years as have many parts of the town centre. I am certainly not opposed to modern leisure facilities but MTF put forward such plans in 2005 to redevelop the Argos car park. Nothing happened - No plans drawn up and no investment. If the MTF board had taken action in 2005 we may well have had both a new bus station and new cinema today!!

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    sjskull

    Monday, July 25, 2011

  • Page 43 does have that comment and also directly underneath 'bus station needs tidying up'. Later on in the same document talking of the MinstergateSt Nicholas Street site it states problems as 'poor pedestrian environment' and 'gradient across site' and shows an indicative use as 'retail led mixed use with potential for significant residential growth' whilst the Anchor site shows an indicative use as 'mixed use-residential with limited retail, bus station and parking'

    Report this comment

    sjskull

    Wednesday, July 27, 2011

  • I speak only for myself and do not claim to speak for a majority. I can say however that the MTF website was launched in January 2005 with the consultation taking place during 2005 between partners Thetford Town Council, Breckland District Council, Norfolk County Council and Keystone. The document is branded Moving Thetford Forward and elements of the parties formed the MTF partnership.

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    sjskull

    Tuesday, July 26, 2011

  • Moving Thetford Forward was indeed the narrative for the 2005 report "Vision and Development Strategy". That study and report was produced using European Objective 2 funding.The name was retained and a new logo introduced following the award of growth point status. Page 43 of the final report headed "dreams" states "Bus Station is very scruffy and needs to be moved" There was no formal MTF board structure in 2005 and more importantly no budget until growth point monies came along (some of which were subsequently clawed back by Government).

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    Robert Kybird

    Wednesday, July 27, 2011

The views expressed in the above comments do not necessarily reflect the views of this site

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