Derelict buildings will be demolished and new public spaces will be created as part of plans to attract visitors and breathe new life into a County Durham town centre. 

Spennymoor is set for further development under the latest proposals revealed by Durham County Council.

Areas including Festival Walk, Cheapside and the marketplace will be redeveloped as part of the local authority’s programme of upgrading town centres. 

The works will be funded by the Towns and Villages Programme and are due to start later this year. 

The Northern Echo: Festival Walk in Spennymoor Festival Walk in Spennymoor (Image: SARAH CALDECOTT)New paving, bollards and seating will be built on Festival Walk, close to units 9-25 and 1-7. There will also be new lighting, which will project images onto pavements and buildings during popular public events. 

A walled garden is planned once the local authority acquires derelict properties on Cheapside and Festival Walk. 

The former library and garage buildings are also due to be demolished in spring 2024. 

Cllr Elizabeth Scott, Durham County Council’s cabinet member for economy and partnerships, said: “We are committed to transforming our town centres and revitalising communities across County Durham as part of our ambitious Towns and Villages Investment Plan.

“We want to enhance our centres by transforming unused areas, such as empty units, into attractive and vibrant public spaces that support an exciting retail and leisure offer. This, in turn, will help the development of existing and new businesses, which will benefit from the increased footfall.”

News of the redevelopment comes after it was revealed Spennymoor would benefit from £20m government funding to improve towns. 

The Northern Echo: How the redevelopment could look How the redevelopment could look (Image: Durham County Council)

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Traders the Local Democracy Reporting Service spoke to said they hoped the funding would improve the appearance of the town centre and help businesses advertise to shoppers. 

Danni Jackson, of Bloom n Witches, said: “Anything that makes us more accessible and noticeable by bringing more people in can only be a positive. We enquired about being on Festival Walk but the rent was too high. Would the funding mean those rents are lowered and make it easier for new independent businesses to set up?”

Durham County Council said its Community Economic Development offers business support, such as free retail-based training courses and site acquisition and development.