Ipswich: Tavern Street set for transformation as Tesco confirms it is moving into former Croydon’s store and Tower Ramparts revamp looks set to go ahead

Artist's impression of Sailmakers - the new name for Tower Ramparts.

Artist's impression of Sailmakers - the new name for Tower Ramparts. - Credit: Archant

The best-known shopping street in the centre of Ipswich is set to get a major shot in the arm next year with two new developments set to get the go-ahead.

The borough is set to approve proposals to change Tower Ramparts into Sailmakers as part of a £4 million makeover, with a new look to the Tavern Street entrance.

And retail giant Tesco has confirmed that it is set to convert the former Croydon’s store into a small supermarket in the new year.

The proposals to change the Tavern Street and Tower Ramparts entrances to the shopping centre will be debated by the borough’s planning and development committee next week.

Council officers have recommended approval for the designs, pointing out that no planning permission is needed for the name change or the internal changes to the centre.

There had been concerns about the scale of the new entrance on to Tavern Street, but the officers say: “The canopy would provide a degree of contrast with its more traditional surroundings and its more lightweight approach would make a more positive contribution than the existing canopy.

“It is considered that the replacement canopy would be of an appropriately high standard and would enhance this part of the Central Conservation Area.”

The work at the centre is expected to start as soon as the Christmas/January sales period ends and it is expected to be completed by the middle of next year.

Tesco is planning to develop the Tavern Street store next year – and has applied for an alcohol licence.

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This week’s news about accounting problems at the company had led to concerns that there could be a re-think on the new store.

But a spokesman for Tesco said: “Our plans on that(Tavern Street) haven’t changed – we are continuing to work on our plans for a store on the site.”