Waterside plans opposed by town council over ‘lack of respect’ for historic buildings

Aylesbury waterside artist's impression
Aylesbury waterside artist's impression

Town centre redevelopment plans don’t show enough respect for historic buildings, according to councillors.

Plans for the Waterside development, which have been submitted by Aylesbury Vale District Council and Bucks County Council, have been formally objected to by Aylesbury Town Council.

It said that not enough consideration and respect has been shown to existing architecture in the plans: “Demolishing parts of the Arches building (formerly the Up-town coffee bar, previously part of the town hall and originally the Corn Exchange trading floor), and rooms above, and building there limits the widest possible range of future uses of the whole historic group.

“These are the most important public buildings (the crown court, the Arches and Judges Lodgings), in the county town, used for centuries for purposes of civic administration and justice.

“There appears to be very little progress on the proposed new crown courts building and Aylesbury Town Council suggested a discussion with the Ministry of Justice to ask what their plans are for the crown courts in Aylesbury.”

The council also suggested alternative uses for the existing buildings, including forming a ‘grand public foye’ or opening up the buildings for use by the registrars’ office.

The development would see a new town square built in part of what is now the Exchange Street carpark, while a new hub housing restaurants and flats would be constructed next to the arches. Work could begin by next year.