Market still has a future say centre:mk bosses

The centre:mk, Midsummer Place and the Secklow Bridge Market.
The centre:mk, Midsummer Place and the Secklow Bridge Market.

THERE will still be a market in Milton Keynes, insist bosses at thecentre:mk after plans for Primark were submitted.

More than 1,200 people had their say on the proposals at consultation events and online since news broke last month that the chain would be opening a £40 million flagship store in the shopping centre.

Key concerns were raised though over the future of the market, with the store likely to be built on the existing site.

Robert Hall, director of thecentre:mk said there are plans to ensure that there will always be a market in Milton Keynes.

He said: “We want to ensure the long term vitality of Central Milton Keynes and by unlocking the potential for further regeneration to the wider area south of thecentre:mk, we believe these latest plans will help to facilitate this and create a positive future for our city.

“It has always been and remains the case that the much loved market is an integral part of what is so special about Central Milton Keynes and its retail offer.

“We are 100 per cent committed to the market, its stallholders and its shoppers and acknowledge the vital contribution it makes.”

But Linda Inoki, leader of campaign group Xplain, said members were baffled by the decision to go against so many public wishes.

She said: “Primark could more easily be built just yards away on land the centre mk already own, including the Food Centre, which is crying out for redevelopment.

“I’m not at all surprised that the centre:mk is claiming that the public supports the demolition of Secklow Gate Bridge. They know that the scheme is tainted by the scandal of Bridge-gate and they are desperate to paint a rosy picture of the city centre dominated by a shiny new Primark.

“I would just urge the public to read the planning application carefully and make up their own minds.”