IMPROVEMENTS to a town centre site have moved a step closer after a number of businesses showed interest in getting involved.
Speculation over plans to develop the Anchor site, off Bridge Street, in Thetford, has now subsided after plans were commissioned by the Moving Thetford Forward (MTF) board.
Now a number of businesses –including restaurants, a cinema chain and a hotelier – have shown interest in the 25,000sqft site.
William Nunn, leader of Breckland Council and MTF board member, said the development would help bring the town centre ‘back to life’.
“We’ve said we want a mixed use development to allow the people of the town to have something there that benefits them.
“If we can get this to happen and bring the heritage aspect together, you’ve really got something,” he said.
The mooted move of Thetford bus station to Minstergate from the Anchor site has cuased concern among residents.
However, Cllr Nunn said that move would still be going through.
“I think there’s a vocal minority whou would like the bus station to stay where it is but our view is that would be against the redevelopmen.
“The view is this does more for the regeneration of the town centre than a bus station.
“It also means the Minstergate site is redeveloped. This gives us the best of both worlds,” he said.
MTF has allocated about £1 million to the Anchor site project.
Plans to potentially house a third site for Thetford Academy on the Anchor site were put forward last year.
These plans were discarded when the academy’s Government funding came in at a much lower level than had been anticipated.