Derelict Wisbech High Street shops revamped as part of Fenland Renaissance

PUBLISHED: 10:38 10 April 2010 | UPDATED: 09:37 02 June 2010

two untidy shop fronts in High St Wisbech have been painted

two untidy shop fronts in High St Wisbech have been painted

CONCERTED efforts are under way to smarten up the appearance of the district s towns and villages. Some streets have at least one building which is derelict, boarded or vandalised or have a plot that is awaiting development or occupation. That is seen as

CONCERTED efforts are under way to smarten up the appearance of the district's towns and villages.

Some streets have at least one building which is derelict, boarded or vandalised or have a plot that is awaiting development or occupation. That is seen as hampering attempts to attract families and businesses into the area.

The renovation programme, called Fenland Renaissance, has been initiated by Fenland District Council. It is designed to help boost the local economy by renovating buildings that have fallen into disrepair, bringing vacant ones back into use and cleaning up untidy or abandoned sites.

The programme has several strands. Under one of them, named Changing Views, some simple measures have already been taken to improve the look of some town centre properties and others have been identified as priorities for improvement.

At 11/12 High Street in Wisbech, for example, the long-neglected shop fronts have been given a bright new look with paintings sponsored by the Wisbech Area Regeneration and Development Trust (WisARD), David Humphrey Demolition and Wisbech in Bloom and low-level planters decked with flowers.

Work has also started clearing the shrubs and litter at Dartford Road car park, March, with the wall to be painted this month. And a flower bed with shrubs and summer bedding is to be planted on land next to the Shah Jahan restaurant in the town, with a final design to be confirmed soon.

Much of the work will be carried out by volunteers from Street Pride and other voluntary groups such as WisARD and in conjunction with town councils.

The Renaissance programme also includes grants for owners of shops and historic buildings to restore and repair their buildings.

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