Views needed on alternative to masterplan
PUBLIC unrest over Cornwall Council's plans to regenerate Bodmin has prompted residents to come up with alternative proposals to stimulate town-centre trade.
Locals say wider consultation should have taken place over the Bodmin Masterplan, which they claim does not address key issues affecting the centre of the town, including improved leisure facilities.
Now the public have been invited to the Ginhouse, off Crockwell Street, for six evening sessions to put forward their own ideas and to discuss proposals drawn up by local architect Ian Armstrong 14 years ago.
The move follows two public meetings held by the Bodmin Pride of Place group, each attended by more than 70 people.
Mr Armstrong's original scheme was for land behind Fore Street, with a mixed-use development based upon leisure, and connecting the lower and upper ends of the street. The proposals included a multi-use theatre/cinema space with ten-pin bowling and some shops, linked to Fore Street and reached via the car park behind the street.
He said he had met Cornwall Council planners to try to resurrect the scheme, and ask why the eight acres of green space were not included in the masterplan.
"The meeting was extremely positive and Cornwall Council would genuinely like to see something happen to the land," he said.
"The aim of the sessions at the Ginhouse is to attract the public to find out more about what can be achieved and what uses they would like to see, and feedback will be provided to Cornwall Council.
"We don't envisage the land behind Fore Street being the only item on the agenda."
Mr Armstrong and GinHouse owner Dick Gynn have also met Phil Ugalde and Orlando Kimber with a view to combining their own activities with the aims and objectives of Better Bodmin and the Bodmin Pride of Place action group.
"Dick's very passionate about bringing the Camel Trail into Bodmin town centre," said Mr Armstrong.
"We'd also like Fore Street semi-pedestrianised, and have discussed road improvements, employment, parking, leisure and brownfield sites."
The six Ginhouse sessions are on Mondays at 7.30pm, beginning on July 2.
Planning consultants drew up the Bodmin Masterplan, with input from stakeholders. It cost £450,000, paid by the EU.