Market plan for Downend
Frenchay & Downend ward councillors James Griffiths, Liz Brennan and Ben Burton in the high street
A STREET market could come to Downend after the idea won support in a public survey.
Ward councillors are calling on South Gloucestershire Council to explore the possibility of introducing outdoor events, including a market, in the high street area after the idea of introducing street stalls was backed by 95% of respondents.
More than 800 people responded to the questionnaire on facilities and future improvements between March and April this year.
It found that most people who visited the high street area did so at least once a week, and almost eight out of ten made at least some of their journeys on foot.
Shopping was by far the most popular reason to visit, with 94% of respondents using the area's shops, 96% wanting more independent shops and 91% keen to see a wider range of shops.
People also wanted to see improvements to the environment, with 80% wanting more trees, plants, or green space and 72% keen to see paving improved.
Smaller numbers (28% and 30% respectively) called for improvements to cycle parking and bus stops.
People also wanted to see Wi-Fi in public areas, which was backed by 66% of respondents, and more click and collect facilities, supported by 65%.
Just under half of respondents (47%) supported live entertainment events.
Frenchay & Downend ward councillors Liz Brennan, Ben Burton and James Griffiths are encouraging business owners or managers interested in getting involved with a market to register an interest by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
They said: "Having campaigned for the creation of a market in Downend, we are really pleased that the public share our vision, having supported the idea in their hundreds through the survey.
"It’s clear that it is something local people want and has the potential to be a great attraction for local businesses, new vendors and visitors alike, supporting shops on our high street with new footfall and creating a fun new attraction for the community.
“With the council working to form a High Street and Cleeve Wood support group, we are keen to make sure that any and all traders who want to be a part are given the chance, and would ask that they contact us to find out how they can get involved.”
*Contractors were expected to fit Downend's CCTV cameras by the end of August. Poles were installed earlier in the summer and the system was due to be up and running by July but the council said there had been "a slight delay in the programme of work caused by a high demand for their services".
A council spokesperson apologised for any inconvenience caused by the delay.