Shopwatch online and on alert thanks to Manx Telecom
Manx Telecom has agreed to sponsor free texts for Shopwatch for one year with effect from May 1.
The move follows the success of the scheme which is a partnership between the police, Douglas retailers and Douglas Development Partnership aimed at reducing incidences of shoplifting in the town centre. Retailers pay a membership fee to register two mobile numbers to the Shopwatch textnet service through which they can alert the Shopwatch security team to any suspicious behaviour or sightings of known shoplifters on their premises. Members also receive intelligence alerts and advance warnings of any potential criminal activity via SMS.
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.