Rotherham Council Launches Town Centre Masterplan

Published Friday, 23rd June 2017
Launch of town centre masterplan
From left are: WYG Group's Project Director Andrew Clarke, Rotherham Council Leader Cllr Chris Read, Rotherham Council Chief Executive Sharon Kemp (Front row, left to right) Rotherham Council Strategic Director of Regeneration and Environment Damien Wilson and Rotherham Council Cabinet Member for Jobs and the Local Economy Cllr Denise Lelliott.

Rotherham Council and Design Company WYG Group have revealed new plans that aim to transform Rotherham town centre, bringing more people to live, visit and work in the town.

The town centre masterplan details how major development will take place - from a vibrant leisure quarter at Forge Island, a new leisure attraction at Guest & Chrimes, attractive outdoor spaces, and high quality riverside living. Highlights of the plan include:

  • Forge Island developed into a major leisure destination including a new cinema, a quality hotel, food and drink and potentially a new theatre 
  • The former Guest & Chrimes building turned into a “new and exciting” leisure destination, with potential for very significant numbers of visitors each year
  • More than 350 high quality riverside homes, offering buyers spacious, well-designed waterfront living at competitive prices 
  • The opening-up of Rotherham outdoor market, with a new attractive stepped entrance and space for a new community advice hub
  • A new higher education development at Doncaster Gate scheduled to open in September 2018
  • A refurbished bus interchange and multi-storey car park, funding for which has already been secured
  • A series of upgraded streets and spaces including a vibrant green space at Effingham Square and new pedestrianised setting and traffic calmed environment at Grimm & Co.

Rotherham Council’s Cabinet Member for Jobs and the Local Economy Cllr Denise Lelliott, said the town centre had the potential to provide something unique to visitors and residents in South Yorkshire.

She said: “The masterplan contains a series of proposals and plans, which brings to life how the town is moving forwards, utilising its river and canal, its open spaces and its feature buildings. At the heart of the plan is to create a much-improved visitor experience with more to do and to see.”

The masterplan has been developed by Design Company WYG Group and Lambert Smith Hampton, who have spent the last nine months consulting with local businesses and organisations to produce the plans. The company’s Project Director Andrew Clarke says the plans have already attracted the attention of a number of developers and investors.

He said: “It has been excellent to see the level of interest in a town from the development industry. Investors have been asking about progress throughout the evolution of the masterplan. Our challenge now is to translate that interest into built development on the ground and to do so quickly. Rotherham Town Centre requires transformational change and the masterplan will deliver this through a partnership of the Council and the private sector.”

Rotherham Council’s Strategic Director Regeneration and Environment, Damien Wilson, said WYG Group had effectively produced a masterplan which would re-invigorate Rotherham but that was also realistic to ensure the projects could be delivered. 

He said: “This project has never been about just getting a masterplan in place, but getting one that is deliverable and viable. The plan brings ambition but also a pragmatic approach, which will require the Council, private sector and investors to work closely together. The Council’s role will be to enable the transformation of the town centre, by drawing in external funding, providing planning certainty and working with potential investors.”

Rotherham is home to more than 270,000 people and the town’s Growth Plan - which is jointly owned between Rotherham Council and the Local Strategic Partnership - commits to growing the borough’s economy and infrastructure by generating 10,000 new private sector jobs and creating 750 new businesses, as well as focusing on a number of key projects including future development of an Advanced Manufacturing Innovation District (AMID), the creation of a Higher Education Campus, and the addition of a town centre cinema and hotel.

You can find out more about Rotherham’s town centre masterplan and comment on the plans at the WYG website.

Visitors to Rotherham town centre can view the plans and speak to consultants at the Masterplan exhibition which will take place in All Saints’ Square (in the old ‘Thornton’s’ unit) on Wednesday 28 June from 11.00 am until 7.00 pm. 

A display of the town centre visuals will also be on display in the Riverside Library Gallery, on Main Street, from Wednesday 28 June until Wednesday 5 July.

Learn more about the town centre developmentsimage