Group plans splash of colour in square
5:30am Friday 4th April 2014 in By Dominic Gilbert
GREEN-fingered residents are working to rejuvenate Theatre Square and are inviting suggestions for new recreational facilities by the Wyvern Theatre.
Josie Lewis, of the Friends of Kembrey Grass, is now looking inwards to spruce up the town centre after campaigning for rural affairs in the town, and was joined by Ann Gladwyn and Margaret Kimber in the first stage of the scheme by weeding the flower beds Working in collaboration with Swindon Council and Artsite, the group is now seeking local companies to sponsor the development.
“Everyone we spoke to thought the town lacked colour,” said Josie, 60, of Gorse Hill. “A lot of the planters that had adorned the town centre have been taken away, such as the ones in Princes Street.
“I discussed the idea with the localities team at the council and management at InSwindon. Both have been very supportive and helpful.”
Ideas were floated at the Central Library drop-in session on Monday, where residents suggested water features, better paving and painted murals, and a large TV screen similar to that at Wharf Green.
“Once the initial work is done the flower beds would not take a lot of maintenance and there could be opportunities for local companies to encourage staff to corporately maintain them including watering,” Josie added.
“Theatre Square is an area of public open space, so its layout should be colourful and attractive. The bandstand could also be enhanced and lots more events could be held in the area.
“We got lots of encouragement when people learned what we were doing. What people wanted is there to be lots of colour.
“If Swindon companies donate some money or sponsor the flower beds with other organisations, Theatre Square could look really beautiful.
Artsite, a charity which resides at Theatre Square, has been involved in maintenance in the area and has welcomed the move.
Bill Cox, 53, studio member at Artsite, said: “We have been involved in maintaining the whole area in the past.
“A couple of weeks ago Josie approached me, and we have begun discussions with people in the town centre and the localities team from the council.
“The place does need a bit of refurbishment, and we were delighted to be involved. We were more than happy to work with Josie and the team in redeveloping the square.
“We have had a few ideas for some activities to put in to the area. In Stroud they have got a giant chess board.
“There is an area by the steps which go down to the rendezvous point which could potentially be used as a bouls court. It is early days yet, and we are keen to listen to creative thinking about how we can improve the usual amenities here.”
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