Frequently Asked Questions
Why are you investing time, money and effort into regenerating Yeovil town centre?
Yeovil is the primary market town in South Somerset and when you visit, we want you to have a great experience so that you want to come back.
But it’s not just about visiting the town centre; we want to provide opportunities for people to live there, with a mix of housing so that residents will shop local and create a vibrant town centre that other people will want to visit and retailers will want to be a part of. Offering a variety of choice to dine is also important and will help independent and national businesses to flourish in Yeovil.
What are you trying to do?
- Public realm – Improving and Rebuilding the main streets so they work better and are less dominated by traffic. Within this area we plan to create new spaces at the Triangle, improve the Borough and make the streets easier to navigate.
- Major Development sites – we are supporting plans to develop the Old Cattle Market and Glovers Walk. We are also seeking to bring new workspace into the centre.
- Transport Systems – we aim to improve the road network, access for pedestrians and cyclists, provide a new bus station and support the bus routes.
- Activity – we support a range of events, activities and initiatives in the town centre. These together will mean that we have things we can do in the town centre to support the economy.
When will we see work happen?
We started building the public realm in 2021. The major development sites have been delayed by Covid but we are working with their owners to bring them forwards as soon as is possible. The transport systems are being redesigned and we hope you will start to see some construction soon.
Where is all the money coming from for the Yeovil Refresh project and the work?
We already have money committed from the Council’s budget and commitments to sell plots of land and assets that are surplus to requirements. This will combine with funds from developers through Community Infrastructure Levy and section 106 agreements.
We have also applied for two Government funds:
Future High Streets Fund – Yeovil was one of the first fifty towns to be selected for this fund. We have a bid seeking £12 million to support our ambitions and hope to hear the result shortly.
Active Travel 2 – Following Covid Related social distance Closures we worked with Somerset County Council to submit two schemes. These are and the installation of a bus gate in High Street to manage traffic entering the Borough and Lyde Road Strategic Cycleway which is outside the Refresh area. We are now working up proposals which we will consult on for these schemes in the next few months.
Why are you not filling the empty shops in the town centre?
Nationally, the old traditional high street idea that town centres are filled with rows and rows of shops is outdated. We want to create an experience where the high street offers a mix of housing, service industry and shops to help counter the effects of online shopping.
Can you not simply reduce the business rates to get more businesses in the town centre?
Surely you can help businesses in the town centre?
You can see if you are eligible for Business Rates Relief on our Business Rate reliefs and exemptions pages.
I made a comment during a consultation that opposed what you have decided to do. Why haven’t I been listened to?
Why have you removed disabled parking from the town centre?
We took a close look at how this area of the street due to its relative narrow exit in to the Borough. As we are trying to improve access and make it easier for people to move around, we have designed a space which widens the pavement. This has meant that we can no longer retain bays on the north side of the street. Some designated bays have been moved around the corner to Union street and we have kept bays on the south side of the street.
What parking is available in the town centre?
For blue badge holders, there are a range of designated bays in central streets, council car parks and private car parks. Blue badge holders can of course also use their badge to park on double yellow lines where this isn`t creating an obstruction or in a dangerous position.
How will changing the public realm attract people to the town? We need decent shops.
I’m a business owner and want to set up shop in the town centre. What should I do?