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First glimpse of new Barnsley revealed

By Mike Cotton, Town Reporter Friday 1st August 2014

THESE pencil sketches are a first glimpse of what Barnsley town centre will look like in just three years.


A £41m redevelopment of the town centre will begin next year, with preliminary works already underway.


The first artist's impression shows a new public square where the multicoloured window Central Offices stands now. The view is taken from the edge of the Interchange Square, opposite what is now the Groggers' Rest pub, and looks towards May Day Green.


At the centre of the image in the distance is the proposed new £4m central library, and to the left of it, the market hall, which will be extended with an attractive glass frontage facing into the square and outdoor stalls.


The second image is from a viewpoint in the south east corner of the new public square, looking down what will be a new shopping boulevard running along what is now the back of the market, through where the current semi-open market and multi-storey car park now stands.


The third image shows a new entrance into the market hall, viewed from New Street, with the front of the Alhambra shown on the right.


The plan is to emphasise the market as the 'centrepiece' of the town centre by making it possible to access it from all sides, and encouraging people to walk through.


There will be water features, and space for pavement cafes, street entertainment and public events.


* For the full story, see this week's town edition front page. *

CommentsClick here to add a comment...
Posted by Kevo I Fri 1st Aug 2014 at 10:15am

Been here before, doesn't look much different than now . Apart from markets . What happened to the terracotta style town and big named .

Why will this make people come into the town? Doncaster , Wakefield and Sheffield will still draw shoppers away .

Very disappointed, again by our councillors

Posted by Jimbo I Fri 1st Aug 2014 at 11:02am

I think you're missing the point Kevo! It was announced back in January that plans had been scaled back due to lack of funding (this is little old Barnsley, remember?!). It doesn't look much different because the majority of the buildings are already there and will be "refurbished". This is a positive for the town and can't come quickly enough, hopefully it will be 3rd time lucky! Having been in Doncaster recently I can't see why you think this is below par. Aside from the refurbished Frenchgate the town centre is just as bad as Barnsley is currently. The bridge over the railway is much needed but it will certainly look strange for a while with no Jumble Lane level crossing. I think the plans do look great, particularly the new "boulevard" area but can't understand why the car park won't be demolished until 2016! Simply getting rid of Central Offices will make a huge difference and I hope this is the first to go pronto. The awful brown concrete really does look dated. I hope all the new buildings aren't cladded in awful colours, simple brick, stone and glass buildings won't date quickly - Take note BMBC!

Posted by Kevo I Fri 1st Aug 2014 at 11:29am

Fair point Jimbo! Yes I know the costs were scaled back earlier . I just want a town centre and markets to be proud of and bring back the heart of the town with new shops and cafés etc.

we need the councillors to kick start the new improved Barnsley because we have generations now who don't spend their money in our town, hopefully we will see the markets and town centre shops thrive and the towns image improve and hopefully see a return of people visiting the town from around the area .We do need larger retail businesses in town to attract people and hopefully create further jobs ...

Posted by humph I Fri 1st Aug 2014 at 11:48am

Shame you didn't published the map of the redevelopment, like you did in the paper, so that people could put all of this into some kind of context.

Posted by CP I Fri 1st Aug 2014 at 11:57am

New town...same scruffy people loitering about making it look untidy (no I dont mean everyone in town) but its going to take a lot more than pretty scenery and refurbished buildings to make the town better!

Posted by Matt I Fri 1st Aug 2014 at 1:00pm

Between me and my colleague we have over 50 years experience of reading technical plans and drawings but the information presented in this week's paper is a little vauge and confusing to say the least. Before and after details would've been welcome here. On a more positive note, this can't happen soon enough. I also echo the sentiment that sympathetic materials and designs should be used to keep things classy. I look forward to hearing more from BMBC and the Chonicle on this subject.

Posted by Jimbo I Fri 1st Aug 2014 at 2:12pm

I too was slightly underwhelmed by what's been released Matt. I feel that as the prospectus is so sparse, surely it could have been released sooner? I believe there aren't many "technical" plans available as a lot of this simply identifies the areas that will be redeveloped over time and these developments will depend on whether retailers sign up to the scheme. As an example, the new "boulevard" area (number 5 on the front page plan) will only be constructed once retailers/leisure sign up to use the available units. Whilst this is in progress the area will be used for additional car parking. This way the council aren't constructing a building that may be empty for some time which is quite sensible. From what I've read elsewhere areas 1

Posted by dl I Fri 1st Aug 2014 at 3:35pm

Market stalls? get with the times BMBC, market stalls selling "tat" you're supposed to be targeting the younger end who are spending their money in places like Meadowhall in named shops.

Markets are dying off, yet we seem to be focusing on them being the main feature and focal point,

Posted by Get Real I Fri 1st Aug 2014 at 4:16pm

I'm pretty sure most people on here can't read or just chose to be stupid! Typical negative comments, I suppose you'd prefer the Town Centre to stay as it is? Markets are actually quite fashionable these days when done correctly. Additionally where does it state there won't be new shops, bars, restaurants, cafe's etc? Just because there aren't images showing what new stores have signed up or confirmation of a new cinema etc doesn't mean the council isn't trying. This was all done last time and went nowhere thus leaving everyone disappointed. Besides, the high street is on it's rear end right now. Remember this is Barnsley and not a large cosmopolitan city (unfortunately!)

Posted by DL I Fri 1st Aug 2014 at 4:37pm

Who's said they prefer the town centre to stay as it is? Can you read? "Market's pretty fashionable" Are they hell. "this was all done last time" Do you really think this ageing Labour council we have, have the fight and vision to get the store's and investment we need for the town centre? I don't, too old fashioned and way behind the times.

Posted by Philip Taylor I Fri 1st Aug 2014 at 6:54pm

recently travelled round Leeds ,Doncaster ,Huddersfield, Wakefield. All these areas have revitalised integral shopping areas of there towns. What Barnsley has got is an impressive Town hall area .Arcade and gorge's yard which are emerging focal points for cultural areas .A Transport interchange That outclasses ALL the above towns. We need to Build on the Aesthetic values that have been brought to the town. If the markets are going to be the focal points don't dumb down on the looks of the stalls .make them look timeless ,look as impressive and not cheap or the plus points in the towns image will be lost to a tacky cheap shopping centre which will not attract new people to the town. Folkestone has rejuvenated its old cobbled quarter by putting art craft shops in ,which makes it appealing .Barnsley could follow suit using the template they used for this area to get business developing in the Arcade where some shops are empty. Springing up are cafes and coffee shops probably too many, what we need now is a Balance to provide interest for the shopper and business help with fledgling craft shops would stimulate further growth in the town before development on a larger scale. Its a Must That the money spent on new Build and Development adds to the plus points and not detract what has already recently done to uplift the image of the town centre.

Posted by jjtiger12345 I Fri 1st Aug 2014 at 8:53pm

Everyone From Barnsley Think Positive It might take a 3-4 years to build but at the end it will bring the population back to barnsley people used to come on coaches from everywhere in england to come to the market because it was really good but since the crappy meadowhall and doncaster's and leeds complex's stepped their foot in it has lost its population and then things in barnsley started falling downhill. but stay positive i think the new format will bring a refreshing essence to Barnsley Town Centre REMEMBER Stay positive

Posted by Nosh. I Sat 2nd Aug 2014 at 3:50am

The council puts a lot of time, effort

Posted by SP I Sat 2nd Aug 2014 at 5:51pm

Moved here 12 yrs ago - was impressed with the market. So hope the plans bring back shoppers - hope we get a good selection of shops to attract the youngsters back. Jobs should improve. Yes be positive!!

Posted by Jay I Sat 2nd Aug 2014 at 9:00pm

It looks great, it will draw people into town becuase it wont look like a doss hole!. I for one will venture into town if it looks good , and isnt falling appart. As for now, i avoid town, its a mess, its ugly, its useless. id rather just go to asda or tesco and hit a gregs or subway outside town than have to go in it. HAVE A BIT OF PRIDE! they need to start somewhere, moved here 8/9 years ago, and all oi hear is complaints when they try and make it better, as far as im concerned the people who dont like it would rather just keep going on about the mines, so build a town with a big hole in the middle and maybe they will be happy.

Posted by Dave I Sun 3rd Aug 2014 at 11:52am

What Barnsley has got is an impressive Town hall/Musuem/fountains area, Arcade, George's Yard, Alhambra Centre, Civic Theatre, Digital Media Centre, Barnsley College, Leisure Centre, a Transport interchange that outclasses anything in Yorkshire and even a decent football stadium, if not team. FOCUS on the POSITIVE people, if all anyone see's and hears is doom and gloom about Barnsley, why on earth would any business want to come here?

Posted by Geoff I Mon 4th Aug 2014 at 8:11pm

What about a new cinema for the town. Sick of having to travel to Sheffield,Doncaster or Wakefield.

Posted by Lee I Tue 5th Aug 2014 at 2:57pm

There is a Cinema in town, its called Parkways.

Posted by Steve I Tue 5th Aug 2014 at 3:28pm

Looks a bit sketchy to me

Posted by waste of time I Tue 5th Aug 2014 at 5:29pm

A complete waste of money and time when barnsley is still populated with morons who want to ruin things for everyone else. Don't get me wrong it is nice it's getting a re-vamp but it will not stay that way. It will just look nicer but the same old scum messing it up for everyone else and ruining the hard work and money that has gone into making barnsley nicer or whatever the intentions are. Barnsley has a terrible reputation and it will stay that way as long as the horrible scum that populate this town are still around.

Posted by waste of time I Tue 5th Aug 2014 at 5:49pm

For an example when silly amounts of money got wasted on doing that bridge up in town and it was something silly like not even a day before some one spray painted on it. This town is beyond help and it's a stupid idea to sink that much money into doing the town up when it could be spent on something more worthy and won't get ruined. Something needs doing about all the drug users harassing people all the time and the violence towards other people just trying to go about their everyday life. It's a thugs town!!!!

Posted by Marc W I Tue 5th Aug 2014 at 7:56pm

My family and I came back home after military service, we've been in Barnsley now 20 years plus. Anything that improves the area is a positive but I can't disagree with the comments ref. what will inhabit the new look Barnsley. I've gone to work early morning wading through broken glass, vomit and burger wrappers and I can only hope this might be a small step in a much needed culture change from thuggery and who can drink the most in the shortest time and pick a fight with anyone who they come across. Hard to be positive.

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