First town centre manager for the Isle of Man
Douglas has the first town centre manager in the Isle of Man after Gill Anderson’s role as development assistant with Douglas Development Partnership expanded to accommodate her increased responsibilities associated with the regeneration and management of Douglas town centre.
As town centre manager Mrs Anderson, who joined the Partnership in 2010 after a number of years working in the Island’s finance sector, will be working with retail outlets, businesses and community groups to co-ordinate events and activities to help attract greater numbers of visitors and investors to Douglas and generally ensure the town centre is presented to a high standard.
Busking bookings open for TT
With the 2011 TT festival fast approaching, street entertainers are being urged to apply for a slot as early as possible by Douglas Development Partnership, the body that licenses buskers on behalf of Douglas Borough Council.
New chapter for The Book Company
In support of the revitalisation of Douglas town centre, the Town and Village Centre regeneration fund has approved a grant application from a Castle Street business to improve the exterior of its premises.
The Book Company at 27 Castle Street is to have a new shop front complete with illuminated signage. Proprietor Spencer Benham (pictured) said: ‘All the indications are that Douglas is gradually “on the up” and as traders, I believe it’s important we do all we can to raise the image of the town centre. Thanks to the grant, which funded half of the £15,000 cost, we’ve been able to go for a more ambitious scheme and have opted for a “heritage” design that is a contemporary interpretation of Douglas’s Victorian past. Hopefully once the work’s completed it will serve as a catalyst to other traders to improve the façades of their premises and alert them to the fact that grants are available.’
Progress on sunken gardens project ramps up
The Garey Glass project to transform one of the sunken gardens on Loch Promenade into a leisure space with a ‘recycle, reuse’ theme is taking shape with the start of on-site civil works by Douglas Borough Council.
Disabled access has already been improved with the installation of a ramp at the northern end in 2010 which, for the first time, allows wheelchair users to traverse the whole length of the garden. In addition, to further aid wheelchair users, a new smooth pathway is being created with paving manufactured from recycled bottles by Corletts of St John’s.
Delivering his Annual Review and Presentation of the Budget Council on Wednesday January 26 when the rate levy for the Borough of Douglas was set at 387p Council leader David Christian JP said the public sector had a responsibility to be sensitive to the current economic climate and that the budget combined prudence with investment, ‘to continue the development of Douglas’. He said that it had been a ‘testing year’ for the Council but thanks to prudent management of resources, continued investment in capital schemes and developing partnerships with the public and private sectors much progress had been made.