My team and I have been speaking to residents, shoppers and business owners in Mansfield town centre over the past four weeks to find out first-hand what they think about the town centre and what can be done to attract more footfall.
Time and time again the Town Hall building is mentioned and I want MDC to have a rethink about the future use of this building.
The Town Hall is currently undergoing renovation, with the intention of being rented out as retail units. However, a quick glance around the town centre shows numerous empty shops and empty market stalls.
The town centre could be a thriving hub of activity. The Town Hall could be key to the change that is needed. I would like to see this building once again house council services, such as a front desk, cash office and council advisers to be on hand to help residents.
A Community Protection team along with a base for the local police force to oversee town centre policing would go a long way to making our town feel much safer for shoppers.
I also believe that the Mayor of Mansfield should also be based in this building and be more accessible to the residents of Mansfield. This would allow the Mayor to see the problems that are currently faced by local traders.
At a time when more and more people are shopping online, we must be smarter and think of ways to attract shoppers to our town centre. Putting local services back into the Town Hall would make it much easier for residents to speak face to face with a Council Adviser, and it would create much needed footfall.