First look at ideas to spruce up Oswestry town centre alleyways

A first look at the ways come of Oswestry's alleyways are to be transformed shows a stunning new clock for one, and a living wall of greenery for another.

The design for an Oswald themed clock at the entrance to one of Oswestry's alleyways
The design for an Oswald themed clock at the entrance to one of Oswestry's alleyways

The changes aim to bring the alleyways back to life and help regenerate the town.

It is all part of a major Oswestry High Street Heritage Action Zone (HSHAZ) project, which has secured a further £180,000 funding from Historic England to help with this and other projects.

A clock will be placed over the Herbie Roberts Way alley, decorated to reflect the legend of St Oswald.

Meanwhile, the Cae Glas Park alleyway will be upgraded with a new gate and a living wall extending the greenery of the park.

The Clawdd Du alleyway will see a solution for better bin storages and Star Passage will be spruced up with better security.

Ed Potter, Shropshire Council’s Cabinet member for economic growth, regeneration and planning, said concept designs gave a flavour of the work being done to regenerate the alleyways in Oswestry town centre.

"The clock will prove to be a real centrepiece of the work and I can’t wait to see it come to life," he said.

"The project is bringing so many positives to Oswestry and I want to thank everyone for their hard work and feedback which has made this a reality."

Oswestry Mayor Mark Jones said: "Oswestry Town Council is investing heavily in the HAZ programme, and the alleyway project will make a tangible difference. Councillors have been involved in discussions with the designers and will be asked to approve the plans at a meeting next week."

Also involved is the Oswestry Business Improvement District. Its manager, Adele Nightingale, said: "Oswestry BID has been working hard alongside our partners Shropshire Council and Oswestry Town Council on the HSHAZ project to really bring our alleyways back to life.

"We are always mindful of the impact any project will have on our business community and believe that by improving these spaces will go a long way to making Oswestry a ‘nicer place’ to visit and therefore encourage more visitors to town. All improvements to our public realm space must be seen as a positive for everyone."

Samantha Jones, HSHAZ project officer, added: "We know that many of the town’s alleyways have been in need of a spruce-up for many years, and this project and the funding has helped us talk to people and find out how they want to see change and how we can achieve it.

"We are delighted with these designs from Environmental Associates and cannot wait to see them made a reality. They will not only enhance Oswestry as a place for locals but visitors too."

The HSHAZ Project is tasked with looking at ways to regenerate the town through heritage, and it has been recognised that the alleyways play an important part in the history of the town, reflecting its medieval layout, providing links between streets.

Nationally the High Streets Heritage Action Zones is a £95 million Government-funded programme led by Historic England, designed to secure lasting improvements and help breathe new life into our historic high streets for the communities and businesses that use them.

Historic England is working with local people and partners to unlock the rich heritage on these high streets, through repair and improvement works as well as arts and cultural programmes, making them more attractive to residents, businesses, tourists and investors.

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