Demolition of the former Charter Arms pub started this week, as part of Rotherham Labours promise to build a better borough!
Labour councillors Saghir Alam and Taiba Yasseen knocked out a brick to symbolise the start of a new era for the markets in Rotherham town centre.
A major refurbishment at the site will create a new look that appeals to all ages. The redevelopment will also build upon the existing mix of shops and services by adding a new dining area to the first floor of the Indoor Market.
This will provide a vibrant link from the Indoor Market to the Outdoor Market, potentially allowing opening hours to extend into the evening.
On the second floor of the Indoor Market, the existing arcade units will be refurbished to create office space for charities, social enterprises and voluntary groups.
Cllr Saghir Alam, Cabinet Member for Corporate Services, Community Safety and Finance and ward member for Boston Castle, said: “The redevelopment of the market’s complex and the new central library are key projects in the regeneration of our town centre.
“More than fifty years since the opening of the Centenary Market, this redevelopment will house our great local traders in an environment fit for the 21st century, helping to bring good quality, affordable produce to the next generations of shoppers.”
Cllr Taiba Yasseen, Chair, Health Select Commission, and ward member for Boston Castle, added: “The investment we’re making will bring impressive improvement and an enjoyable space in which people will be able to shop and relax.
“There’ll be something for everyone at the new markets and that can only be good news for the town and its economy.”
When complete, visitors to the markets will notice striking changes to the look of the indoor market, as well as a more welcoming feel, thanks to an improved design and Labours promise to build a better borough.
Rotherham Council secured funding from the Government’s Future High Street Fund to part finance the improvements of what’s officially known as the Centenary Market.
The Outdoor Market will become a flexible space used as a market, and also as exhibition and event space when needed. The markets will be connected to the town centre fabric by a new terraced public space that will open up the market frontage to Eastwood Lane and Drummond Street.
A new library will occupy the corner between Henry Street and Drummond Street and will include a café, meeting rooms, flexible gallery space, and a maker’s space.
Investment in the markets is part of the Council Masterplan to transform the heart of the town.