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Are there any alternatives being considered and what happens if we don't get the money?

The proposals presented in February 2020 were based on extensive discussions with property owners, existing commercial tenants, potential commercial tenants, and a wide range of stakeholders including key organisations and community groups who operate in Buxton. They are also based on in-depth analysis of the town and opportunities, commercial reality, co-funding  and deliverability. They were developed to inform our business case to secure major government and private sector money to deliver the sort of town centre the people who live in Buxton want to see and providing facilities that they will use and enjoy.

We are confident that if funding is secured, there will be business operators who want to run the range of new facilities, leisure and restaurants being proposed. Having a scheme that was deliverable and grounded in commercial reality was fundamental for the emerging proposals

However, the final proposals are not fixed - all feedback from the consultation has been fully considered and where feasible, incorporated into the emerging revision.  We are not working on simultaneous other options - as it is important that we consider and balance the feedback from all parties to understand if they are feasible and work towards a single scheme that is acceptable and workable. The chair of Vision Buxton, as part of his consultation proposal, submitted an alternative floor plan and our response to his suggestions can be viewed  here [404KB]

If we don't get the funding and co-investment required to help deliver transformational change then, unfortunately, the current trends are likely to continue. In part, this is because the Council has little influence over national trends in retailing which is seeing larger multiples and banks shrinking back to just larger cities and out of town developments alongside increasing Internet sales - and also because the Council does not own any properties on Spring Gardens. It isn't possible for the Council to offer rates discounts or preferential tax deductions to attract certain retailers to encourage them to either come to or stay in the town as this isn't legal.

Without the investment, we are therefore likely to see a further reduction in stores unless there are national changes in shopping trends, and we will have to look at the best way to manage this impact shrinking retail demand and footfall. 

We want to give Buxton the very best chance of securing funding so we can deliver a town centre that meets residents and businesses needs and will help our town recover as quickly as possible from this Corona emergency. Securing the millions pounds of investment for our town centre shopping area - from both commercial investors and central government - will put the town in the best place to do this.