Warminster’s Town Development Committee meets on February 22 to discuss the future of three of the town’s high profile projects.
Councillor Tony Nicklin will report on three items for members to debate and decide on further action: purchasing the Old Police Station: the Hub Building would add value to the Town Council as a centralised office for communications and information, or inclusion in a bigger plan: forward an “Expression of Interest” with Wiltshire Council to accelerate central car park regeneration proposals, and request consideration for the new Market Town’s Recovery Scheme?
The Police Station has been put up for sale.
Councillor Nicklin’s report will state: “The building has been central to the Town Plan and Neighbourhood Plan of 2016. It is the largest redevelopment opportunity in the town centre, and was central to Wiltshire Council’s campus scheme before it ran out of money.
“Regrettably events have overtaken us, and the property became part of Police assets. It is now redundant and the town council has been given notice by Wiltshire Police of their intentions for us to determine if we are interested in acquiring the property. This can be done if we show our interest in the normal way, or by declaring the site an ‘asset of Community Value’ and negotiate a favourable sale with them,” Cllr Nicklin will say.
The Hub Building is owned by Wiltshire Council, but a 25-year lease was granted by West Wiltshire District Council (WWDC) to Warminster & Villages Development Trust (WVDT) about 12 years ago. The WVDT could be interested in the building being transferred to the town council. “The building needs ‘a considerable upgrade of its internal accessible areas, and its technical services, but would be a natural extension for a growing town’s asset register and centre for community affairs.
For Central Car Park, the latest idea is to create a Piazza area between the Cornmarket and Horseshoes Mall, taking over part of the car park to form a market square, and redeveloping the Hub building into the focal point.
In December, 2019, the Leader of the Council Phillip Whitehead promised to provide some seed funding by providing WC staff and draughting facilities.