Partnership launch aims to boost town

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BUSINESSES and members of the community turned out last night for the launch of the Stowmarket Town Centre Partnership.

The project aims to bring together the public and private sectors to promote the town centre and to increase Stowmarket’s revenue and investment.

A Stowmarket town loyalty card called the StowCard was also launched at the event, as part of the partnership.

People from Stowmarket Town Council, Mid Suffolk District Council and Suffolk County Council rubbed shoulders with businessmen and Stowmarket community members at the launch event held at Barnards VW showroom, in Station Road East, on Thursday.

Mark Strachan, Stowmarket town centre manager, said: “It’s about people working together to promote the town they live in.”

The Stowmarket Town Centre Partnership has been developed in response to the struggling financial and economic climate, which has hit small market towns particularly hard.

Mr Strachan said: “The project looks to increase the footfall by introducing shop local schemes.”

He hosted the launch event on Thursday, introducing local businesses to the idea and what the scheme could offer them.

Those in attendance also heard speeches from David Ruffley MP, Peter Down chairman of Stowmarket Chamber of Commerce, David Blackburn Stowmarket town clerk, and Joanne Rogers a Forest Heath town centre manager.

Part funded by the town, district and county councils, it is hoped that the project will eventually be able to support itself.