Hundreds view Letchworth Town Centre exhibition

HUNDREDS of people have had their say on proposed plans for a town centre during a week-long open exhibition.

Letchworth Garden City Heritage Foundation invited the public to comment on three options for the redevelopment of The Wynd in Letchworth Town Centre by opening up a shop at The Arcade.

Taking place between last Saturday and Friday, 367 people commented on the plans, drawn up by Allies and Morrison Urban Practitioners, as the second stage of the consultation was launched.

Members of the project team were on hand to take the public through each of the three options, with models available to view.

Option 1 would see The Wynd becomes Letchworth’s Arts and Crafts Quarter, drawing on its existing use. Option 2, called Letchworth’s Hidden Garden, would provide a garden offer for the town and include a garden centre and cafe, while Option 3 - Letchworth’s Eco Neighbourhood - would introduce town centre homes as well as shops and restaurants.

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The unveiling of the plans follows an initial consultation - also launching with an open exhibition - which ended in August.

David Ames, from the project team, said: “As expected we’ve had less this time around then when everyone came down to have a splurge but it’s proved successful.

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“Generally there’s been support for all three options but one and two are proving to be more popular than three. Most people are more comfortable with keeping the existing buildings but there have still been some that say they like Option 3.”

The Comet visited the exhibition and spoke to three Letchworth GC residents who had taken a look.

Julia Winter, of Howard Drive, said: “They all have their merits but I personally believe Option 3 simply because we need to be a vibrant town and we need more young people to live here.”

Bedford Road resident Peter Wilcox, who is a member of Transition Town Letchworth, said Option 2 was his preferred option, adding: “It does seem to be on the right sustainable lines.”

Peter Turl, of Park Close, couldn’t pick a clear favourite but said: “We need people to come into the town centre and have a reason for doing so, say eat at a restaurant.”

The consultation, which will be completed with a third stage to finalise plans in spring 2012, continues until December with discussions with Letchworth GC groups, organisations and schools planned in the coming months.

People can also have their say on an online forum -

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