Test Valley Borough Council have announced they have completed a purchase of the town’s covered shopping centre.
Leader of the council Phil North said this morning, “I’m pleased to announce that Test Valley Borough Council has now completed on a deal to purchase the Chantry Centre.
“The council already owned 40% but in a £7.2m deal has now bought the long leasehold from Aviva meaning that the council now has complete control over the site.”
He says that changes in shopping habits and the continued sophistication of the internet is having a massive impact on High Streets up and down the country. Town centres are becoming more of a place for leisure and living as well as retail. The council leader adds, “Therefore, need to create a place where people will want to visit, work, live and spend time with their family, friends and colleagues.”
Phil North has been duly elected as borough councillor for Bourne Valley ahead of next month’s election after the seat was uncontested.
On a social media post Cllr North announced:
“The acquisition of the Chantry Centre is a real game-changer for our ambitious plans to redevelop Andover town centre and can now be joined to the Cultural Quarter project – where we also plan to redevelop the area around the Magistrates Court providing a new theatre and eateries with outdoor seating. Our plan is to progress them both in tandem.
“This is a project for the people of Andover to create an attractive and vibrant town centre – and over the summer there will be various opportunities for public consultation and feedback as we embark on the masterplan work to shape our new town centre.
“We have a once in a generation opportunity to revitalise our town – and I’m determined to grab that opportunity with both hands.
“One of the council’s immediate plans is to completely refurbish the toilets at Andover bus station. This overhaul will see the facility revamped to a high, modern standard, complementing the brand new Changing Places toilet facility that the Council opened recently in the Unity Online premises.
“And, in further good news, I also plan to extend the opening hours of the Chantry Centre car park for the benefit of customers of The Lights Andoverand Andover Leisure Centre, as well as those out for drinks or a meal in the town centre.”