Go-ahead for £9 million boost to transform town centre

Artist impression of new market

New look Market Square - Credit: Teignbridge Council

A £9 million Government funding boost to transform the market and cultural quarters in Newton Abbot has been given the green light.
The award of the Future High Streets funding confirmation means that detailed planning by Teignbridge District Council can now start on re-establishing the original Corn Exchange and Market Hall structure by opening up the space currently used by the market and the Alexandra cinema.
The plan aims to revitalise the centre of Newton Abbot, creating a central, flexible mixed use space for community, artistic and cultural activities, alongside a revitalised market, food hall and Market Square.
The proposal to turn the current Alexandra cinema into a bar/restaurant and events venue, with a high quality market space provided in the existing market area requires knocking down the dividing internal wall. Objectors fear the magic of the building would be lost and there wouldn’t be a suitable performance space provided for entertainment.
In the coming weeks, the council have said they will work with local groups to ensure anyone affected by the changes have a chance to have their say, before any formal plans through the planning process are submitted.
Council leader Alan Connett said: “Winning £9 million is fantastic news. It means we can now move ahead with plans to regenerate the town centre, which will help to bring more people into Newton Abbot along with protecting and creating jobs.
“As we move into the detailed implementation, we hope that traders, local organisations and community groups will work with us so that we can meet the needs of the widest possible range of interests.
“This is a great opportunity to make sure that Newton Abbot builds on its 800 year history as a market town. We want to ensure that Newton Abbot remains the premier market town in Devon, benefiting residents, traders and visitors.
“Creating a modern town centre that embraces sustainable travel and encourages people to shop and buy local, is an important part of helping businesses and communities recover from the impact of Covid.”
The proposals also include upgrades to Queen Street and the National Cycle Network Route, the building of a new state-of-the-art cinema in the current New Look store.