THERE was a letter in last week’s Express (Why we are leaving) about a retailer who has chosen to leave Wakefield city centre. It questioned the benefits of being located there.
I would like to reassure your readers that we are doing all that we can to support the city centre in these tough economic times, working closely with the private sector. It is in everyone’s interest to work together to boost economic growth in the city centre, and to make it an attractive place for residents and visitors to spend time in.
With this in mind, we have invested in new cleaning equipment to provide an improved and cleaner environment, and this has already begun to have an effect. We are also organising more events and markets in the city centre, making the city centre a more attractive place to visit.
We are also helping to bring people into city centre through our new building, Wakefield One, on Burton Street, where over 1,000 staff will be located, who will all spend both time and money in the city centre, contributing to the local economy.
Your correspondent mentioned empty shop units. These are not owned by the council, they are privately owned, and we are working with the City Centre Partnership to try and occupy these units.
We will soon be launching our Jobs and Growth Plan for the district, which includes supporting the city centre economy in Wakefield. We recognise the importance of this task, and will do all that we can to make Wakefield city centre a thriving business area.
Coun Denise Jeffery