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Facelift aims to spruce up town centre
WITNEY’S town centre is set to get a grand £100,000 revamp to make its paving safer and its historic heart more attractive.
Traders have been campaigning for improvements to the centre for years and Oxfordshire County Council has now committed up to £145,000 for the area to cover the revamp and potentially other work in the town and Eynsham.
Market Square and Corn Street will be resurfaced and broken or missing bollards and railings on Church Green will be replaced.
Funds will also be used to install new safety measures around a zebra crossing in Oxford Hill where two children were injured last year.
David Harvey, councillor for Witney West, said: “It is really the regeneration of the historic trading quarter of Witney.
“We could do with some improved signage on Corn Street and some of the litter bins need replacing.
“It is to the benefit not just of people who live and work in Witney but also those people from all over Oxfordshire and elsewhere who come here.”
Market Square will be resurfaced with new paving, at a cost of about £30,000, and Mr Harvey said work could start “quite soon”.
Work in Church Green – which will also see improved wheelchair access to the green – will cost about £12,000 and is expected to start by the summer.
Corn Street will be resurfaced between Swan Court and Market Square at a cost of just under £70,000 and work is likely to begin in early autumn.
Witney Chamber of Commerce chairman Lesley Semaine said: “We have been asking them to address these problems for a really long time, but the funds were never there.
“A lot of the paving is very old in Market Square and it is lifting up in places, which is dangerous.”
Martin Eldridge, who has owned a sweet stall on the market for 25 years, said: “Nothing has been done to the Market Square in about 25 years.
“There have been a few minor accidents – mostly older people falling over – and something does need to be done.”