WESTBRIDGE Park’s main green space - a haven for Stone events - will be kept and improved as part of council proposals being revealed this week.
Stafford Borough Council is launching its public consultation on leisure facilities in Stone, including details of how the popular town centre park could be developed.
Proposals include redeveloping the existing leisure centre to include a six lane, 25m swimming pool and gym and play areas for toddlers older children and teenagers.
The Scout hut and canoe club spaces will be retained under the proposals and the Guides’ meeting place improved. The borough council plans to ensure the main part of the park’s green space is preserved and will offer it to Stone Town Council.
A “small amount” of the park would be sold to a food operator to help fund the scheme, and the borough council would also contribute a “substantial sum”.
The food store would be medium-sized, according to a council briefing but the development would not include a new doctors’ surgery.
Stafford Borough Council leader Mike Heenan said: “We think this is a very exciting opportunity for Stone and the north of the borough, combining some excellent new leisure facilities at Westbridge Park while still being able to host annual events such as the Stone Festival, Food and Drink Festival and Bonfire night.
Another consultation is also being launched this week by Trent Vision Trust.
Billed as “an alternative strategy” to the borough council’s proposals, the plan aims to rejuvenate land around the canal and riverside areas, expanding and improving the Trent Valley Nature Reserve and creating a new river park.
Oliver Dyke, founder of Trent Vision Trust, said: “Once we have consulted with the people of Stone and its surrounding parishes the trust will consider and come forward with a holistic master plan for the Trent Valley.
“TVT are looking forward to working with the local councils, communities and stakeholders to ensure that Stone has the maximum opportunity to become a key tourist and visitor destination within Staffordshire.”
Plans go on show tomorrow at the Crown Hotel 10am-4pm and there will be further exhibitions at Stone Farmers’ Market on Saturday, Moddershall Village Hall on Monday 5pm-8pm, The Lamb Inn’s back room in Walton Wednesday 2pm - 8pm, Yarnfield Village Hall on Thursday, February 7 5pm- 8pm and Barlaston Village Hall 5pm to 8pm- Friday, February 8.