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Planning the future of Wincanton: Round 2

Tuesday 14 January 2020, 23:17
By Dave Smith

About 100 people who attended the first Wincanton for the Future public meeting in July 2019

On Tuesday 21st January 2020, a week today, the Wincanton For the Future working group will assemble for its second meeting to further develop the Town Council’s plan for the future of the town. Everyone is most welcome to come and join in. If you have ideas to improve the town and community, come and share!

Wincanton For the Future

The second meeting of a new working group
Tuesday 21st January 2020, 7-9pm
King Arthur’s School hall, West Hill, BA9 9BX
Open to all businesses and residents

The story so far...

This new working group, led by Wincanton Town Council and other stakeholders in the town, was formed at its inaugural meeting last July in the Wincanton Memorial Hall (pictured above).

With a fantastic turnout of around 100 people of a wide age range, the format of the evening was a world café-style group discussion, with seven large tables each seating at least 10 participants. Each table discussed ideas for the town and community from a slightly different perspective, with at least one discussion leader to guide the conversation, and everyone jotted their ideas on large sheets of paper with marker pens. Participants were reminded to swap tables every 10 minutes or so.

“What a great evening with lots of passion and energy in the room. Amazing ideas to take forward. Lots to do over the coming months to shape the plan. Thank you for being part of our exciting journey!

“As promised, following our successful Wincanton For the Future enagagment event held last July, the Town Council and local businesses have worked to develop our regeneration plan. Your views, comments and ideas have been used to create a 3-year transformation plan.”

 - Sue Shelbourn-Barrow, Mayor of Wincanton

In the weeks following the meeting, the Town Clerk’s team collated all the ideas written on the paper to form a weighted list, and to identify popular priorities. Here are a few of the most popular ones.

A discussion table at the first Wincanton for the Future public meeting in the Memorial Hall in July 2019

Keep free parking Pop-up shops/restaurants
Cinema Affordable clothes/shoe shop(s)
Plant more trees Improve public communications
Pedestrian area Radio station
More public toilets Music/arts venue
Restaurant(s) Make the town eco-friendly

What’s next?

Following last year's meeting, and interpretation of all the feedback, the Town Council and stakeholders have identified eight key areas for continued, more focused discussion. Next week's meeting will follow a format very similar to the last, with a table dedicated to each of the areas of discussion, including the following.

  • Art and history
  • Climate and nature
  • Health and wellbeing
  • What can the Library offer you?
  • What would you like on the High Street?
  • SSDC high street regeneration plan
  • Marketing and communication
  • Volunteering and social action

The hope is that this meeting will start to produce actionable ideas that the Town Council can start to plan and budget for over the next three years. To that end, the working group extends a warm welcome to anyone who lives or works in Wincanton to attend the meeting next week, and contribute any ideas that might make Wincanton an even better place to live.

Help getting to the meeting

The venue for meeting has changed, from the Memorial Hall to the King Arthur's School hall on the other side of town. This will likely cause problems for some people who may have found the previous meeting easier to attend. To help bridge the gap for anyone with limited mobility, the Town Clerk has booked the CAT Bus to do free shuttle runs from the Memorial Hall to the School and back. It'll pick up from the Memorial Hall from 6:30pm, and begin returns from 9pm.

Related articles

19th July 2019: Planning the future of Wincanton
18th July 2019: Another step forward for SSDC’s Wincanton Town Centre Strategy
3rd May 2019: Wincanton Town Council election results 2019
15th January 2019: Wincanton Town Centre Strategy draft is now available for public consultation


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