Town centre’s bid for ‘Portas Pilot’ facelift

AYLESBURY is preparing its bid to win the chance of being a ‘Mary Portas Pilot’.

The town centre partnership is currently putting the finishing touches to its bid for a high street facelift, complete with a share of £1million.

The competition is being run nationwide with the backing of Mary ‘Queen of Shops’ Portas and the Local Government Minister, Grant Shapps.

The prize will be offered to the top 12 towns that come up with the best high street blueprints and plans which demonstrate energy, enthusiasm and vision. The plans to be put forward for Aylesbury are, however, veiled in secrecy, to keep them hidden from competing towns.

Diana Fawcett, town centre manager of Aylesbury, said the Town Centre Partnership decided to go ahead with the bid to build on what the body, made up of key town figureheads, has achieved.

She said: “It’s something we’re very excited about and we’ve had so much interest from businesses and community groups.

“The project will support new independent traders, providing them with a number of different outlets to begin trading, coupled with a support and advice structure to encourage sustainability.”

Chairman of the partnership and manager at Hale Leys Shopping Centre Roger Simmons added that the proposal will encourage unity between town centre