The future is bright for town centre
5:30am Tuesday 14th January 2014 in By Mike Benke, @Michael_Benke
PLANS are being put in place to help Swindon town centre have one of its biggest years to date.
InSwindon, the company responsible for the running of the town centre, has decided 2014 will be the year the area truly defines itself.
There are a number of reasons for optimism with the Big Screen in Wharf Green now fully in the hands of InSwindon and Swindon Council, and the Regent Circus development due to open later this year.
A variety of activities have been arranged over the next 12 months that will not only utilise these assets, but celebrate the town.
Rebecca Rowland, the InSwindon BID manager, said: “There is a lot to look forward to and we’re all really excited.
“January is naturally a slightly slower month generally but once that is passed then we think it’s going to be a really good year.
“We’re in the process of putting together a number of events to highlight everything which is good about the town.”
While a full calendar is yet to be put together some of the events being arranged include a Disney Film Festival and various themed markets while there will be a lot done to commemorate the 100th anniversay of the outbreak of World War One.
Now in control of the Big Screen, InSwindon has far greater freedom to show many of the big sporting events being held this year such as the Winter Olympics and the Commonwealth Games.
There are also plans to show the opening ceremony of the World Cup, with talks between InSwindon and the police ongoing about screening matches.
“The Big Screen is likely to be the centrepiece for much of what we do over the coming months,” said Rebecca.
“We are now in a much better position to decide what we want to show and the options available to us are quite varied.
“What we have seen in the past is when we have put grass down on Wharf Green it has become a great place for people to gather so we will be looking to exploit that again.
“Our funding is provided through the town centre businesses so it is important we communicate with them and if there is an activity they wish to use the screen for, such as the launch of a new computer game, then that is something we can look into.”
While the 2013 festive period may have just come to an end, thoughts have already turned towards making this year’s the biggest ever.
Rebecca said: “Considering quite late into last year we didn’t know whether we were going to have a Christmas market, I’m pleased with what we had to an extent.
“But I honestly believe we can do much better so we have started talks on making next year’s event much more in common with what is seen in bigger towns and cities.”