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Work begins on improvements to shopping area in Burntwood

The Ryecroft Shopping Centre in Burntwood

The Ryecroft Shopping Centre in Burntwood

Work to improve a Burntwood shopping area has begun.

Car park resurfacing and improved lighting are among the changes being made at the Ryecroft Shopping Centre.

The work is taking place after businesses launched the Ryecroft Traders Association (RTA) in a bid to improve the run down space outside their shops.

Rob Fitzmaurice, of Midland Plumbing Supplies and chairman of RTA, said: “It is great news that these works are finally going ahead.

“Because the parade’s car park is owned by a private individual that cannot be traced there have been problems to overcome in getting this project off the ground, but the traders have all worked together and we’re all committed to improving Ryecroft Shopping Centre.

“We’re delighted these works have started.”

Councillor Sue Woodward, Staffordshire County Councillor for Lichfield – Burntwood North, has backed the project through the Local Community Fund and said the refurb was long overdue.

“Ryecroft car park has been a blight for the local shops and shoppers for many years,” she said. “I’m just so delighted that I could help the traders to fund the vital works.

Damaged steps at the Ryecroft Shopping Centre

Damaged steps at the Ryecroft Shopping Centre

“It’s also great news that by providing the funding, the traders have come together to form an association, which will hopefully mean even more great initiatives will be driven forward at Ryecroft to boost trade and footfall.”

Other funding for the project has come from Burntwood Town Council, Burntwood Business Crew and Lichfield District Safer Community Partnership, while traders will be contributing to the ongoing maintenance.

David Whitehouse, chairman of the Burntwood Business Crew, explained: “Creating a good first impression is really important for any business and the pot-holed car park and tired forecourt has been letting these hard working businesses down for many years.”

The shops will remain open throughout the works, which will be done in three phases. The first stage, which got underway this week, will see repairs to the forecourt’s paving. This will be followed by resurfacing the front car park and patch-repairing the back car park, before an upgrade and reconnection of the lighting.

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