CULTURAL heritage is being embraced as the first plans to turn Northwich into a shopping and recreational haven get under way.
The chosen developers, Wilson Bowden, will be working in partnership with Vale Royal Borough Council. They plan to break the 30-acre area into distinct quarters with an iconic leisure complex to symbolise the renaissance of the town.
Ian Robertson, Wilson Bowden's chief executive, said: 'Northwich has huge potential to expand its retail and leisure offerings and we intend to create a market-leading scheme. We are looking towards working with the Northwich Vision part-nership to deliver these objectives.'
The 15-year Northwich Vision project will increase the town's appeal as both a shopping and recreational destination. A major part of the project is the Baron Quay's scheme, plans for which include the development of more retailing, residential units, a leisure hub, a hotel, offices, a major enhancement of the river frontage and an iconic new arts and cultural centre which will symbolise the renaissance of the town.
Cllr Keith Musgrave, leader of Vale Royal Borough Council, said: 'Over the next 15 years the Vision will deliver an innovative plan to embrace the town's waterfront and establish Northwich as an appealing market town and tourist destination.
'This investment and regeneration is great news for the town. Socially Northwich will become vibrant and economically there could be more jobs and opportunities for people.'
The Northwich Vision regeneration plan includes proposals to embrace the two rivers running through the town, the Weaver and the Dane, by creating a mixeduse waterfront activity. The waterfront area would include retail outlets, bars and restaurants, which would increase Northwich's tourist appeal.
The Partnership comprises of Vale Royal Borough Council, English Partnerships, the Northwest Regional Development Agency, Cheshire County Council and British Waterways, Environment Agency and the Learning and Skills Council.
For more information visit www.northwichvision.org