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An exciting, important step forward as improvements to Wednesbury town centre’s public spaces begin | Sandwell Council

An exciting, important step forward as improvements to Wednesbury town centre’s public spaces begin

Published 24th March 2022

Artist's impression of Market Place.

Works are to start on improvements to public spaces in Wednesbury town centre that will enhance Market Place and boost people’s wellbeing through new cycling and walking developments.

The improvements will be carried out from 19 April by Bridge Construction Ltd on behalf of Sandwell Council.

The Wednesbury High Street Heritage Action Zone (HSHAZ) public realm works include:

  • improvements to Market Place, featuring high-quality paving materials and the enlarging of the pedestrian space to create a multi-use event space;
  • the relocation of the open-air market to Market Place and the top of Union Street.

The improvements include:

  • the re-alignment of the carriageway;
  • carriageway tarmac re-surfacing;
  • new raised granite road;
  • new paving to footways;
  • re-configuring the street furniture with new street trees;
  • installation of new market stalls;
  • new paved public event/market area.

Walking and cycling infrastructure improvements, funded by the Active Travel Fund, which aim to improve people’s physical and mental health, will include:

  • improving crossing points for pedestrians;
  • new cycle infrastructure, including more cycle parking;
  • creating wider footways to encourage people to walk or cycle into the town centre;
  • reducing the speed and amount of traffic passing through Market Place by introducing a one-way system and traffic calming to create a pleasant environment for pedestrians and cyclists.

The works follow a consultation with residents, business owners, market traders and other stakeholders in November 2021.

Businesses will receive letters in the next few weeks with more details about the improvements.

Find out more about the Wednesbury HSHAZ (the text takes you to a web link).

The public realm works will commence on site from 19 April to late October/early November. However, there will be a number of road closures to be aware of during this period:

1 (19 April-29 July 2022):

  • the closure on Market Place of the road between Union Street and Spring Head;
  • traffic will be diverted via Riddings Lane, Holden Road, Hydes Road, Walsall Street, Upper High Street, High Bullen, Holyhead Road, Lower High Street and vice-versa;
  • The Shambles will be made a two-way road temporarily during phase one of the works.

2 (10-12 October 2022):

  • the closure on Market Place of the road between Lower High Street, Spring Head and Riddings Lane;
  • traffic will be diverted via Bridge Street, Mounts Road, Holden Road, Hydes Road, Walsall Street, Upper High Street, High Bullen, Holyhead Road and vice-versa.

3 (21-25 October 2022):

  • the closure on Market Place of the road between Upper High Street and Walsall Street;
  • traffic will be diverted via Riddings Lane, Holden Road, Hydes Road, Walsall Street, High Bullen, Holyhead Road, Lower High Street and vice-versa.

Councillor Iqbal Padda, Sandwell Council’s cabinet member for regeneration and growth, said: “The public realm improvements are an exciting step forward in the HSHAZ project, and respond to what people and businesses identified in the consultation.

“I would like thank residents, businesses and visitors in advance for their patience and apologise for any short-term inconvenience as we undertake these important improvements to the town centre’s public spaces. These improvements will support the town’s thriving neighbourhoods and act as a catalyst for the wider regeneration of Wednesbury.”

Artist's impression of Union Street.

Please note: the artist impressions of Market Place (top) and Union Street are for illustrative purposes only.

The Wednesbury HSHAZ project is part of Sandwell Council's commitment, in partnership with Historic England, to support the town centre and highlight the historic significance of the area. The heritage-led regeneration scheme runs until March 2024.

The High Streets Heritage Action Zones is a £95 million government-funded programme led by Historic England, designed to secure lasting improvements and help breathe new life into our historic high streets for the communities and businesses that use them. Historic England is working with local people and partners to unlock the rich heritage on these high streets, through repair and improvement works as well as arts and cultural programmes, making them more attractive to residents, businesses, tourists and investors. historicengland.org.uk/services-skills/heritage-action-zones/regenerating-historic-high-streets/

Historic England is the public body that helps people care for, enjoy and celebrate England’s spectacular historic environment, from beaches and battlefields to parks and pie shops. They protect, champion and save the places that define who we are and where we’ve come from as a nation. Historic England care passionately about the stories these places tell, the ideas they represent and the people who live, work and play among them. Working with communities and specialists, Historic England share their passion, knowledge and skills to inspire interest, care and conservation, so everyone can keep enjoying and looking after the history that surrounds us all.