Views of the public are needed for �2.1m Barkingside revamp

Design consultants have been appointed to help carry out a �2.1million revamp of Barkingside, but it is the views of the public that are needed.

JMP Consultants and architectural firm DK-CM, will meet with residents and traders later this month to gather ideas for the Better Barkingside scheme.

The cash injection, which was agreed in March, will come from the Mayor of London and Redbridge Council to help improve the High Street.

Ideas have included the refurbishment of walkways at the northern end, the removal of cobbles outside the library and the development of land next to the swimming pool in Virginia Gardens.

John Sharrock, chairman of community group Barkingside 21, which will play a lead role in the project, said: “We are keen to see improvements made to the town square and the eyesore in Virginia Gardens.

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“I think both Barkingside 21 and the architects will be disappointed if there isn’t a big input from the public and at the moment the plans are pretty much a blank sheet.”

A public consultation will be held on September 27 from 7.30-9pm in The Aldborough Room, Fullwell Cross Library, High Street, Barkingside.

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Mr Sharrock added: “We want the people who actually come into the High Street to have their say and make it into a place they want to visit.”

Steve Eaton, chairman of the Barkingside Business Traders’ Association, added: “Barkingside is tired. We need to increase footfall and give the whole place a new lease of life. Any money we can get is great and we hope to introduce a farmers’ market in the new square.”

Work is expected to begin in spring 2013 and be completed by the end of March 2014.”

Anyone who is unable to attend the meeting can email any comments and suggestions to

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