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SWT celebrates opening of Coal Orchard

26 October 2022 : Council news, Community, Planning and development

Somerset West and Taunton Council will mark the official opening of its multi-million pound Coal Orchard regeneration with celebrations bringing together local businesses and organisations.

The town centre development of riverside living, retail, working and leisure space will be declared open at 11am on Saturday 5 November by the Mayor of Taunton, Cllr Sue Lees; the Chair of SWT, Cllr Hazel Prior-Sankey; and the Leader of SWT, Cllr Federica Smith-Roberts.

Members of the public will have a chance to join in the launch and see the development which incorporates a grand plaza with a stepped terrace to make the most of its position on the river Tone.

Taunton Brewhouse will be providing live music and entertainment including face painting and circus skills workshops, with wandering performers related to its Christmas production - a brand new circus musical extravaganza The Little Prince.

Somerset County Cricket Club and Stumpy the Mascot will be greeting visitors and playing some fun cricket themed inflatable games throughout the launch.

GoCreate Taunton will be holding art and craft workshops for children, and there will be an artwork display by chainsaw artist Matthew Crabb from West Somerset who is currently working on an exciting new sculpture for SWT to be unveiled soon.

SWT is in the process of developing a Car Club pilot which aims to deliver eco-friendly shared transport in the heart of Taunton.

Its project partner, Co Cars, will be at the Coal Orchard event to showcase the electric cars that will be available to hire via the scheme which is expected to go live by the end of the year.

The Coal Orchard development retains the character of the unique town centre location in the Cultural Quarter while enhancing the environment.

There is a 42-space short stay car park for shoppers and dedicated secure bicycle storage for people living in the apartments.

Leader of the Council, Cllr Federica Smith-Roberts, said: “I am excited to see this ambitious development come to fruition and would like to thank everyone involved in the project which has been delivered during some of the most challenging times for our country and the construction industry.

“We have created a stunning development celebrating Coal Orchard’s heritage while raising design quality with modern building and green initiatives.

“It is fabulous to be able to invite the public to begin enjoying this waterfront development which puts the river Tone at the heart of Taunton.”