Dunstable set for new splash park as town centre plans progress

A new splash park is set to be built in Dunstable after the town council was told it is in line to receive a six figure grant.

Friday, 29th April 2016, 10:35 am
Updated Friday, 29th April 2016, 11:39 am
Should funding be given final approval a new splash park will be constructed in Bennett Memorial Recreation Ground

Last month the Gazette revealed that Dunstable Town Council had submitted a £1.3m application for funds from Central Beds Council, in a bid to spark an upturn in the fortunes of the town centre.

CBC has now told the town council that, in principle, it is prepared to part fund five projects to the tune of £610,000.

Almost half of that sum (£275,000) has been provisionally pledged towards a new splash park and a catering facility which would be built in Bennett Memorial Recreation Ground, Canesworde Road.

Other projects include:

- A town centre architectural lighting scheme to showcase key buildings.

- New signage, street furniture and town entrance features to be delivered after the de-trunking of the A5.

- An enhanced town centre cleansing scheme.

- Improvements to The Quadrant and its toilets.

Central Beds Council’s executive committee will make the final decision on the bid at a meeting on June 7.

Town council chief executive David Ashlee told the Gazette: “It is really good news, we are really pleased.

“We are hoping that in total (with other CBC schemes) we will be able to get the best part of a million pounds, which combined with our match funding will take the scheme to more than £2m.”

If successful Dunstable will be granted the money from CBC’s £4m Market Town Regeneration Fund, a scheme which was drawn up to “boost vibrancy and growth” of towns across the area.

CBC director of regeneration and business, Jason Longhurst, said: “Market towns are at the heart of local communities and the Market Towns Regeneration Fund fits with the council’s many other programmes that make Central Bedfordshire a great place to live and work.

“We want our town centres and high streets to remain vibrant and withstand ongoing economic challenges, so our Market Town Regeneration Fund is designed to support town centres in the absence of national funding schemes.”

He added: “I’m delighted that we’ve had such a positive response from our town council partners and we look forward to working with them together with local businesses and communities to crystallise their thinking and ultimately help realise local ambitions for our market towns.”