A £23m funding bid to transform Trowbridge’s town centre has been approved by Wiltshire Council leaders, and will be submitted by the end of the month.

At a recent cabinet meeting, Wiltshire Council leaders unanimously agreed to progress a bid which aims to rejuvenate the town, with a range of projects to attract visitors and new businesses, as well as bringing more leisure and cultural facilities into the county town.

The projects would focus on encouraging independent businesses to set up in vacant properties, as well as creating safer pedestrian links along the river corridor from the town centre to the high street.

Wiltshire Council leader, Councillor Philip Whitehead said “The Future High Streets Fund bids will help us to unlock the potential of Trowbridge town centre, as we adapt to the changing face of the high street.

“The high street has faced a number of challenges in recent years, and the Covid-19 pandemic will only add to the challenge as we look to attract more people to visit, stay and shop in Wiltshire.”

Trowbridge Central councillor and leader of the Town Council, Stewart Palmen added “I think the whole public consultation – the consultants we have been using, Inner Circle, have been really good – and we have had input from the Chamber of Commerce, Invest In Trowbridge and the people of Trowbridge, and it has all been very positive.

“I am very keen on this and I think we are addressing all the elements that are issues with the town already.

“One aspect of this is re-working Castle Place which has the multi-storey car park which is owned by the Wiltshire Council, and I understand the re-development of that will potentially involve residential and leisure developments, with leisure facilities moving closer to the town.

“I think that a transport strategy should be put into place, meaning that this car parking can be replaced elsewhere. We need a good policy on that.”