EXHIBITION stands could be replaced by “arts huts” in a bid to revitalise the Westover Gardens makers’ market in Bournemouth.

Speaking on Monday, BCP Council’s cabinet member for tourism, councillor Mohan Iyengar, said plans were being considered for how to attract younger people to the area.

He said the makers’ market “needs regeneration” to gain wider appeal and said the market would be expanded to have a wider focus, including on food and fashion.

The market was created in 2018, following on from the long-running Pine Walk art exhibition, and is held throughout the summer.

Last year the council reduced its daily rent from £14 to £10 in a bid to encourage greater use of it.

And in 2010 a masterplan was produced by Bournemouth council to revamp the Pine Walk area of the gardens.

But councillor Iyengar said at Monday’s meeting of the council’s scrutiny board that more ambitious proposals were now being put together.

He said the market was “popular in the past but needs regeneration”.

“Going forward, our thinking is for local art, fashion, food and crafts – appealing to a younger generation of residents and visitors and ensuring a changing offer to bring people back each week,” he said.

“We are developing plans to replace the old exhibition stands with arts huts which will look better and be used more often.”

He added that this would also alleviate issues of anti-social behaviour in the area.

At the same time, he confirmed work to rebuild the nearby aviary would be carried out in “late spring”.

The £200,000 project is funded by the Parks Foundation and its long-running fundraising campaign and was also aimed at increasing the number of visitors using the Pine Walk area of the gardens.

Planning permission for the larger replacement 360 degree aviary building was granted by Bournemouth council several years ago.