Boosting town centre top priority for authorities in Ipswich
- Credit: Su Anderson
As the new civic year started in Ipswich, boosting the town centre has been put right at the top of the political agenda for both main parties at the borough council.
Last night’s annual meeting of the borough council saw 42-year-old Stoke Park councillor Glen Chisholm installed as Ipswich’s new mayor with his 18-year-old son Clinton taking up the role of consort.
David Ellesmere was confirmed as council leader – and he indicated a significant shift in emphasis at Grafton House in a bid to improve the town’s growth over the next few years.
He said: “The main priority we are going to be looking at over the next few years is improving the economic development of the town and especially the town centre. I shall be working very hard to ensure that the plans that have been drawn up for the town centre are put into practice and I hope to work closely with Ipswich Central, the county council, and others to achieve that.”
The borough is the only partner so far to have committed money to the redevelopment of the Cornhill and Mr Ellesmere said he would be working hard to develop the plans further – so work could start at that site once Queen Street and Princes Street have been pedestrianised next year.
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The executive at the borough retains the same members, although Bryony Rudkin has become deputy leader of the authority.
Boosting the town centre is also the over-riding priority of the opposition Conservatives, said group leader Nadia Cenci.
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“The development of the town centre is the key issue we have to deal with over the next few years. I shall be taking on responsibility for this directly within our group.
“We have to get this right,” she said.
The Conservatives also have a new group deputy leader – Bixley councillor Eddie Phillips.