Get a chance to have a say on plans to redevelop Bedford’s Harpur Centre

MBTC Harpur Centre
MBTC Harpur Centre

Plans to renovate and redevelop Bedford’s Harpur Centre go on display on Thursday, May 11.

The plans, which include renovating the entrances on Midland Road and Horne Lane and revising the layout of shops, will be on display between 9.30am-5.30pm in Unit 6 (next to Warren James) when people will be invited to drop in to view the plans and discuss them with the project team.

James Burchell, a spokesman for Tellon Capital, asset managers for the new owners, said: ““We recognised the potential of Bedford and The Harpur Centre before we purchased it last summer and have used the last eight months to properly review and consider next steps – we are delighted to have invested here.

“We are working with our existing tenants on our plans and look forward to sharing the proposals with the local community on Thursday, May 11.”

The proposals, which coincide with the shopping centre’s 40th year, follow careful consideration by the owners of the Harpur Centre and are focused on securing its place as a premier shopping destination. The first step towards modernisation took place at the end of 2016 with the introduction of free wi-fi, a mobile compatible website is set to follow in the coming months.

Samantha Laycock, Harpur Centre manager, said: “This is an exciting opportunity for the Harpur Centre and we are looking forward to working with our tenants and occupiers. This is another important step in creating a 21st century shopping environment.”

The Harpur Centre, in MIdland Road, was build on the site of the former Bedford Modern School, which relocated to Manton Lane, Brickhill, in 1974. It’s also worth noting:

> The eastern façade is Grade II listed and was designed by Edward Blore in 1931

> Edward Blore is most famous for designing Buckingham Palace

> The rear parts of the original building were demolished in 1970 and the shopping centre was developed

> The shopping centre comprises over 200,000 sq ft and contains 37 retail units.