It was confirmed last month that North Somerset Council, which owns the Sovereign Centre in Weston’s town centre, was been awarded £1.7million by central Government’s Getting Building Fund to revamp the precinct into a multiuse, community focused events space, with planning approval granted in October. The ambitious plans put forward include:
- introducing workspace for business and entrepreneurs, supporting more local working following a post pandemic decrease in work commuting
- enhancing the quality and selection of food and drink by creating a new dining area
- creating space to support active lifestyles and wellbeing, such as a bike hub
- revamping key parts of the interior and exterior of the building
The council will also be taking the future name of the Sovereign Centre to the public in an engagement exercise later this year.
Cllr Mark Canniford, Executive Member for Placemaking and Economy, at North Somerset Council said: “I’m confident that part of the transformation plans for the Sovereign Centre will offer the changes needed to create a hub for the local community of Weston. This funding allows us to complete the first stage of our plans for the Sovereign Centre.
“We are looking at a new normal that is very different for shopping and living. Engagement on the name of the centre will take place in the coming weeks. This is a community space and it’s important the community has their say on what the centre will be called.”
A contractor has been selected from a tender process and works will start December 2021.
The council's executive approved the new plan for the Sovereign Centre in February 2021 and the commissioning plan for the appointment of consultants and contractors to undertake works to convert vacant retail space into new, mixed-use space.
A consultation on the town centre’s future uses was undertaken by Turner Works at the end of 2019 with thousands taking part in the consultation, including residents, businesses, investors, and visitors as part of Weston's ten year Placemaking strategy.