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Waitrose agrees to £180k boost for Malmesbury
Waitrose is to invest more than £180,000 into Malmesbury.
As part of the conditions for planning permission to build a store on Avon Meadows, the supermarket giant has confirmed it will give £182,850 as part of its Section 106 legal agreement.
While £30,000 will be dedicated to public transport, much of the funding will be go towards the creation of a town team, made up of councillors, retailers and interested parties, who will use £127,000 to boost the town for decades to come.
Town and Wiltshire councillor Simon Killane said: “We wanted to make sure that when we got planning gain that it went into all the right places.
“This is our chance to do something quite inspiring to make the town resilient, and futureproof it from the challenges of digital media.”
The team will work, with the help of a marketing consultancy company, to promote the town.
Plans for how planning gain money should be spent were identified from a consultation exercise in January 2012 when the community was asked how it should be used.
“It was pretty clear that people wanted money from planning gain to be spent on things that would make the town better off,” added Coun Killane.
The store has also agreed to donate £12,000 a year to two local charities, and will build a pelican crossing at St John’s Bridge, which would cost council taxpayers thousands of pounds. Money for the town team will be issued in stages in coming years. Aimee Frankham, who chairs the Chamber of Commerce, which is one of the key groups expected to be represented, said: “I’m happy that the money is to be spent on the town and it’s businesses.
“I hope that it will invigorate the high street and create a better sense of belonging.”
Nigel Keen, of Waitrose, said: “We are looking forward to working with the Town Team to ensure we play our part in attracting even more shoppers to Malmesbury.”
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