Young people across Lichfield are being invited to share their vision of the future of the city centre.

Cllr Doug Pullen, leader of Lichfield District Council, has launched a competition for schoolchildren to demonstrate what they think the future of the area should be.

It comes as the city centre masterplan project continues to take shape.

Cllr Pullen said it was important that the voices of all generations were heard as part of the process.

Doug Pullen

“We’ve always had ambitions for the space opposite Lichfield City station to be developed with a mixture of open space, recreational uses, office buildings and housings – but we’ve never asked the next generation what they think about how it should look and what we need to consider.

“Our competition is open to all schools, colleges and sixth forms. They can choose how they want to present their ideas, whether it be hand-drawn plans, a painting or even Lego and Minecraft.”

Cllr Doug Pullen, Lichfield District Council

The land includes the bus station, as well as the former Tempest Road and police station sites that were originally earmarked for the failed Friarsgate redevelopment scheme.

Winners will be selected in three categories:

  • Best primary school entry
  • Best secondary school entry
  • Best Sixth Form or college entry

Entries can be submitted individually or as a class or whole school.

“We are looking for creative ideas for a vision of a new city centre. It should include spaces for people to live, work and have fun.

“Entries will be judged by a panel of experts and there will be prizes for the winners and runners up, along with an opportunity to meet designers and developers to see how the ideas could be included in the final design for the area.”

Cllr Doug Pullen, Lichfield District Council

The competition closes on 8th December. Entries can be submitted to media@lichfielddc.gov.uk.

Join the Conversation

19 Comments

  1. How about a game of Sim City to see how quickly Lichfield can be filled up with houses, with the prizes being awarded by a selected panel of developers?

  2. “Entries will be judged by a panel of experts”. Well so far the “experts” have not produced any viable plan for this ill stared site.
    On second thoughts, having children providing sensible ideas is probably a step up from what we have been having since the Friasgate debacle. I do hope they will be paid appropriate rates for any adopted designs.

  3. Nice idea but we know LDC will probably ignore the results.

    How about councillors reaching out & visiting the schools in their ward to hold group discussions with the young people?

  4. “We’ve always had ambitions for the space opposite Lichfield City station to be developed with a mixture of open space, recreational uses, office buildings and housings”
    No you haven’t, it was going to be the Friarsgate retail development until the money fell through.

  5. Your PR Dept is dysfunctional Mr Pullen, You were going to have Frairsgate Shopping Centre 10+ years ago. Have you forgotten? or is this a snow job to deflect from the bald truth that your Council has spent a fortune on all sorts of reports to develop this site? All come to nought!! The best option is the swimming & sports centre with spaces for community use too. That is what the teenagers want too, they told LDC this 10+ years ago! The location is ideal far better than taking green park space away as wrongly proposed by another expensive report which can only be reached by majority of Lichfield folks – by car.

  6. I like the idea of inclusion however, the ‘panel of experts’ is interesting, who chooses them and who are they? I hope the Civic Society will be represented…
    This is a commendable idea but really, we were going to have friarsgate on this site until financing went belly up, so what’s this really all about, a u- turn?

  7. If they use Lego. They will be built to a higher standard than a lot of the new builds being thrown up in Lichfield.

  8. I suppose asking the kids is at least cheaper than paying for more consultants. It will also result in more imaginative, ambitious ideas. The question is whether they will be listened to any more than their parents have been.
    My now overaged vote would be for the new leisure centre to be located here, along with an all-electric car park (not forgetting the shiny new built-over bus station). All topped by a walk-on roof with a rooftop garden and café and a performance area for open-air concerts. Oh, and a cinema.

  9. @Carl Sholl… Futuristic, Practical, Incisive and Doable.
    Get it down on paper. It would be a real asset. The mixed level idea is revolutionary, and transforms any area limitations.

  10. They can’t even afford to built a proper leisure centre (despite all the extra council tax generated from new houses everywhere) – you’ve got no hope for all that good stuff Carl.

  11. The Council is planning to build a leisure centre anyway, so presumably there’s funding for that, so why not build it on this site rather than somewhere nobody wants it? I think the idea of lots of new retail space is dead. You only have to look at other town centres that couldn’t even keep the shops they had. Walsall, Sutton, Lichfield itself. Tamworth has its retail park, but the town centre is like a ghost town now. Rather than attracting shops, Lichfield should think about attracting people. Retailers would then move into the empty shops already there. BTW, somebody said on here that the Council gets £1,000 for every new house built in new developments. If that’s true, it’s chicken feed compared with the prices the houses will go for, likely to be £500,000+. The Council is being ripped off. They should be asking for at least £50,000 per house (or 10% of the market value). That would go some way to paying for the amenities the new residents will expect.

  12. Carl, only the large 4/5 beds would fetch over £500k. The Council is insisting on smaller 2/3 bed homes throughout the Lichfield District, and I suspect the majority of these houses being built would be 2/3 beds. So definitely not fetching £500k+ each. I otherwise agree with your sentiments, but as I say, this Council can’t even deliver a proper leisure centre (see glorified swimming pool being proposed currently in a green space – surprise surprise) so the possibility of an ambitious mixed-use development for this site is slim to nil.

  13. Carl – going by the articles which can be found at https://lichfieldlive.co.uk/tag/friary-grange-leisure-centre/ there isn’t funding for a new leisure centre.

    Is the thing about the council getting £1000 per new house built true? Can someone cite a reliable source for that? People say all sorts of things in comment sections that are written off the top of their head and may or may not stand up to examination. Often people pick up something someone said as a matter of opinion and later recount it like it’s fact.

  14. Glenda, LDC receive the Community Infrastructure Levy (CIL) – I don’t think it necessarily equates to £1,000 per house (not sure) but the last news article I read about this said LDC had accumulated over £1m from this levy. However, it’s often used to facilitate further housing development – not to build leisure facilities! So we, the residents, don’t see much benefit.

  15. Why not do a deal with Forward Leisure re building on Frairsgate. They did this Malvern & Crawley maybe elsewhere too- a very good fitness indoor leisure centre with rooms for hire by community groups charities etc, & an indoor all age used all the time swimning pool, They know how to manage such places, in fact give them complete control & management of The Garrick too like in Gatehouse Stafford = audiences are way up as they are presenting what Stafford wants to see & pay for. Non of this is rocket science.

  16. It would be absolutely fantastic to have a leisure centre with a swimming pool near the city train station where people could get the bus, train, cycle or walk to get to. A dream come true for my family

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