More on that Milsom Street Quarter idea

B&NES has finally caught up with Bath Newseum as we revealed the proposed long-term plans for the north side of the city centre days ago.

Anyway, the public consultation on an ambitious proposal to transform the ‘Milsom Street Quarter’ by attracting creative industries, providing 180 new homes and relocating Bath’s Fashion Museum has been launched today (May 4). 

The Milsom Quarter Masterplan is a vision for the next 20 years to revitalise the ‘top of the town’ the Milsom Quarter area is bounded by: George Street to the north, Upper Borough Walls to the south, Queens Square to the west, and the Cattlemarket car park and the river to the east.

Cattle market site

The master plan, being led by Bath & North East Somerset Council and funded by the West of England Combined Authority, details how Milsom Quarter could be transformed into a nationally renowned fashion destination centred around a new Fashion Museum, a range of high-end retailers and space for makers and creative industries.

Milsom Street imagined in ‘event mode’

Up to 180 new residential properties would be created in new development, alongside repurposing vacant spaces above shops to accommodate employment space, leisure and residential use, increasing the mix of uses and vibrancy in the area.

A move to make the Quarter a greener and pedestrian-friendly place to enjoy would be enabled by a new public square at St Michael’s Church and restricting vehicle access at Green Street and Lower Broad Street, giving priority for walking and cycling. Access would be maintained for public transport, for servicing and deliveries and for other exemptions. Although in the long term the vision is to also remove bus movement from Milsom Street.

St Michael with St Paul in Broad Street.

The council is inviting people to have their say in the consultation which is open until July 15.

Many hundreds of you have already viewed the short video explaining the masterplan but – if you haven’t – it can be viewed here

Councillor Richard Samuel, Deputy Leader and cabinet member for Economic Development and Resources, said: “The Milsom Quarter Masterplan is an ambitious vision for the next chapter for this part of our city centre to ensure it has a positive future. To redevelop the area effectively we need to create opportunities for change, attracting a diverse mix of industries and retailers to Bath and increasing footfall.

“The Combined Authority’s Love our High Streets programme has shown that investing in the area increases footfall, through vibrant events such as the Great Bath Feast and the Christmas Light Trail, which brought more people into the city centre and led to new businesses opening their doors. We intend to secure a new home for the Fashion Museum in the Quarter so it can remain at the heart of the city and at the centre of what we hope will be a nationally renowned fashion destination, supporting local trade.

“To help make such a significant project a reality we’ll need feedback from residents and businesses, so please have your say in the consultation. It’s important you share your views on how you want to see areas including Broad St car park, the Cattlemarket and King Edward’s School developed. Over the next few years, while the master plan is developed, we’ll continue to invest in the public space with greening, on-street events and entertainment, providing a flavour of how the area will come to life in the future.”

There will also be a number of drop-in sessions and online briefings about the master plan at the council’s Commercial Hub at 15 New Bond Street. Details can be found on the project webpage

The plans for each of the four areas of Milsom Street Quarter are:

  • Milsom St. Core (Milsom St and New Bond St): will remain an important location for fashion-led retail and will be home to an enhanced Fashion Museum
  • Broad Street Yards: will better connect Milsom St and Broad St and will accommodate new-build contemporary space for the creative industries, workspace and visitor accommodation
  • St Michael’s Neighbourhood: will become a growing residential neighbourhood for Bath with new development and conversions of upper floors of properties, supporting a range of local shopping and amenities at ground floor level. A new public square will also be created in front of St Michael’s Church.
  • Walcot Gateway: Will provide an improved entrance to Walcot St, with a new frontage to the street and the redevelopment of the Cattle market site for housing

The master plan is funded by the West of England Combined Authority’s Investment Fund.