Oswestry market revamp given go-ahead

A scheme to revamp Oswestry's indoor market building and bring it into the 21st century has been given the green light by the town council.

The design put forward for the shutters at Oswestry's Indoor Market
The design put forward for the shutters at Oswestry's Indoor Market

The council intends to brighten up the market by putting colourful vinyl designs onto the shutters, with further work planned for the inside of the building.

The Powis Hall building on the Bailey Head was put up in the 1960s, replacing an historic old building which had been the town hall then used as a corn exchange, as a butter and cheese market, and during the Second World War for emergency storage and for auxiliary fire service purposes.

Proposed designs by a local artist for the shutters depict generic market goods, highlighting its purpose.

During a virtual meeting of the council, members approved a recommendation to buy the designs for the shutters, however they want part of it to be amended.

They also agreed to earmark £1,500 to invite tenders on design ideas and branding changes to the market hall.

Oswestry's Indoor Market

According to a report to the town council, which met via Zoom on Wednesday, improvements could include lighting, internal decoration and planting.

Councillor Sandy Best, moving the recommendations, said she was in favour of the shutter designs and plans for further improvements.

Councillor Rosie Radford added: "Anything that improves the front of that market is a bonus. "It's an improvement from what there is already.

"If it encourages people to look at the front of that market it's a really good idea."

Councillor Olly Rose said she liked the designs for the shutters apart from one depicting the letter M and asked if they could be tweaked.

Members agreed to go back to the designer to see if they could come up with an amended design for the central panel.

The council, which manages both the indoor and outdoor markets in the town, has already invested in new tables and chairs inside the building and improved wifi for visitors and traders.

Explaining the need for further improvements to the market, the report to the council said: "Despite supporting 40 plus independent businesses, the Oswestry Indoor Market receives unfavourable comments when compared to Shrewsbury and others such as Newtown.

"Most visitors would reflect that the indoor market requires a cosmetic makeover. Town council officers do not have the creative skills and vision needed to develop ideas.

"Therefore, council are asked to consider procuring professional design support to provide a critical assessment of the current set up and to put forward an action plan."

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