Bletchley ‘eyesore’ given revamp ahead of town centre regeneration

The former Co-operative store in Bletchley PNL-150707-155653001
The former Co-operative store in Bletchley PNL-150707-155653001

A former supermarket in Bletchley has undergone a facelift as part of improvement plans for the town centre ahead of the opening of the East-West Rail link.

The Co-operative building at the top of Queensway has been in decline over the last few years and had become an eyesore which was affecting the regeneration of the town.

In 2014, Milton Keynes Council used its powers under Section 215 of the Town and Country Planning Act 1990 to issue a notice requiring the refurbishment of the building’s exterior.

More regeneration is on the cards for the town over the next few months.

Rob Middleton, MK councillor for resources and commercialism said: “The Co-operative building was letting down the town by looking so neglected and I’m delighted that Milton Keynes Council has been able to use its powers to do something about it.

“The building is one of the first things you see coming into Bletchley’s Queensway and it wasn’t giving the right impression.”

Barbara Sullivan, from Bletchley and Fenny Town Council said: “Well what can we say? At last.  The refurbishment works that were promised on this building have happened and the building has been signed off and ready to let. 

“For so long this has been an eyesore in Queensway and has really been a main bugbear for residents and workers here.

“We hope this building will attract good quality retail interest now and we can look forward to a busy ‘happening’ area especially with the bandstand outside.”

Works planned under the Fixing the Links programme include improving pedestrian links between the railway station and the town centre, new LED lighting under the railway bridge, the removal of the wall on Locke Road near the Working Men’s Club, highway improvements and better signage and wayfinding.

The programme is co-funded by MK Council and South East Midlands Local Enterprise Partnership (SEMLEP).

East-West Rail between Bicester and Bletchley is due to open in March 2019.