Could a City Centre Commission vavoom the fortunes of Gloucester?

Gloucester Docks

Gloucester City Council is to consider establishing a City Centre Commission to develop and drive the delivery of a 10 year business plan for the city.

The Commission will be chaired by the Dean of Gloucester, the Very Reverend Stephen Lake, and will replace the Regeneration Advisory Board set up in 2013 which itself replaced the Gloucester Heritage Urban Regeneration Company.

The City Centre Commission will be made up of individuals and organisations with the ability to lead the innovation needed to re-purpose and revitalise Gloucester. The recently adopted Social Value Policy will guide the commission to ensure communities are at the forefront of change.

Gloucester City Council recognises the centre’s traditional retail offer serves a relatively small portion of the local population, and is looking to transform the city centre in a way that will repopulate it with residents, workers and visitors who want a wider variety of experiences.

The ambition of the 10 year vision will be to create a city where innovation and heritage go hand in hand for everyone to access and enjoy.

Cllr Richard Cook, leader of Gloucester City Council, said: “It’s clear that the RAB has successfully run its course in helping us plan and deliver regeneration in the city over a number of years.

“The role of city centres is rapidly changing, especially so during the Covid-19 crisis, and we have to adapt to ensure Gloucester offers the very best possible experience, one that is inclusive and welcoming.

“Gloucester has a rich heritage and diverse culture that we can build in to an offer that will bring communities together to take part in activities and events both day and night.

“It’s now the right time to rethink how we progress in a way that is best for Gloucester and the Commission will have a significant role in making this a reality.”