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Saxon Square revamp finally set to start
A MULTI-MILLION pound development to revive a Christchurch shopping centre has finally been given the go-ahead.
Agreements have just been completed for the refurbishment of the Saxon Square shopping centre and former medical centre, which will see a new hotel opened there.
In 2011, plans for a Travelodge hotel were approved by Christchurch pla-nning committee for the rundown building but have been on hold until now, while legal talks have been happening.
Work will start soon to remove the existing tiled canopies over the shopfronts and replace all the external paving, planting boxes and other items within the square and mall.
Previous plans to update the centre, which was built in the 1980s, were put on hold due to the state of the financial climate.
Cllr Ray Nottage, leader of Christchurch Borough Council, pictured above, said: “This is great news.
“The refurbishment will enhance the work we have been carrying out to improve the town centre and will create a more modern retail space.
“It’s good to see that the medical centre, which has lain empty for more than 20 years, will now be used to attract more people to the town. Given the large number of landholders and other interested parties involved, it has been a real achievement to pull together the range of complex legal agreements which will make the redevelopment possible.”
The new agreements transfer the responsibility for the day-to-day management and maintenance of the square and malls away from the council, although the public toilets and the public car park are retained by the local authority.
It has also been agreed the council will have free use of the square for 75 days a year which allows stalls from the Monday market to continue to use the square and for events to be held there.
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