Warm reception for Aylesbury arts hub plan

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Plans to make Aylesbury an arts and entertainment hub have been welcomed by leading town figures.

The eight-year project, set out by the district council, hopes to build on existing attractions, license more venues for music and dance and bring in mid to high-end restaurants and shops.

David Stopps, promoter of the reincarnated Friars club which the council wants to be a central part of the town’s future, said he was encouraged by some of the ideas.

Mr Stopps said: “When Friars was first run we were very well known for putting Aylesbury on the map.

“In those days we did something every two weeks and we would love to get back to that. The problem is availability at the venues.

“I think the town needs more smaller venues. It would be nice to have one or two which could hold 300 or 400 people.”

Aylesbury Vale District Council hopes by introducing more choice for sit-down dining the entertainment scene will flourish.

Honorary secretary of the Aylesbury Society Roger King welcomed the plan, but warned some of the details need building on.

Mr King said: “On the face of it, it seems to be in the right direction.

“It’s quite a broad brush. There is detail but it doesn’t really say how they’re going to implement it or where the money is going to come from.”

Aylesbury MP David Lidington said anything that can make the town ‘stand out from the pack’ would be good.

He said: “We should support initiatives that make Aylesbury a more attractive arts and entertainments centre for people to visit.”

The plan was given the thumbs-up by district council members earlier this week.