Call for action to halt decline of town centre in Sleaford
CALLS for action to halt the decline in town centre shopping in Sleaford have been made by a group of local councillors.
The Sleaford Independent Councillors Group at North Kesteven District Council are urging Sleaford Town Council to develop an alternative Town Plan for the town with a particular emphasis on protecting the heart of the town and its future.
The action follows concerns by the Group that the current NKDC Masterplan and its plans for regeneration relies too heavily on the Tesco redevelopment of the Advanta Seed site which is becoming more and more questionable as time passes.
Group leader, Councillor Brian Watson, said: "We have been questioning the NKDC Masterplan for some time and its reliance on the Tesco and its investment.
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"Everyone will have seen articles in the press recently about the falling Tesco sales and NKDC has no guarantee that Tesco will proceed with its plans or provide the investment on which the NKDC Masterplan relies.
"Many townsfolk still have concerns about the appropriateness of the Tesco location on the Advanta seed site and the associated closure of Southgate East railway crossing. The Town Council has already decided not to sell land at the Rec – a decision supported within Sleaford - and this decision cannot be ignored."
Mr Watson added that the uncertainties are already causing problems on the high street, with a number of established businesses closing – Walkers book shop being the latest of many.
He claims to have asked the Town Council to develop, with the people of Sleaford, its own Town Plan however Town Council clerk Shelagh McIntyre says to date they have not receive such a request.
Councillor Marianne Overton, Leader of Lincolnshire Independents, said: "It is quite right that the Sleaford Independent Councillors Group at NKDC point out these concerns and take the lead in the development of alternative proposals for Sleaford."