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Council Works With University To Reverse Town Centre's Decline

Friday July 25 2014

What do you think to the town centre? What do you think to the town centre?

BARNSLEY Council has been working with experts from Manchester Metropolitan University to reverse the decline of the town's high street businesses.

The £250,000 scheme involves 10 towns across the country and aims to help build resilience and adaptability into traditional British retail centres, which have faced a range of unprecedented challenges in recent years.

Barnsley was chosen to pilot a new research method to analyse change in the high street, developed by experts from the university.

It was found that around a third of the factors that impact upon high street performance can be managed locally.

The project's lead researcher, Professor Cathy Parker, chairwoman of Retail and Marketing Enterprise at MMU, said: "What's important is that locations understand what they can influence - and prioritise the actions that will have the most positive impact.

"In the case of Barnsley, a lot can be achieved by the retailers working together with town centre services and other stakeholders to improve the customer experience."

Attracting new retailers and development, making a better customer experience, tackling anti-social behaviour across the town centre and better marketing and promotion were discussed.

Barnsley town centre manager Anne Untisz said: "We now need to use this to engage with more retailers to drive forward a valuable and achievable action plan."

What would you like to be done to improve the town centre? Better food outlets? A department store? Have your say below.

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Reply Posted by grinds my gears on Friday July 25 2014 at 14:38
More money down the drain, just ask the people pn the street and they would have gave the same answers. Better shops, get rid of druggies and **** heads and clean the streets

Reply Posted by guy fawkes on Friday July 25 2014 at 14:38
More people space water plants take them to Sheffield on the train see what they have done outside city hall and town hall and the train station.

Reply Posted by STEVEO on Friday July 25 2014 at 15:36
Jesus H Christ!

What do we want to see in town?
What we don't want to see is the Shouty Alchos congregating outside peel street lavs or the druggies that try to tap shoppers up for "busfare".
Said this before but a greater police presence is needed to move these people on using legislation that gives them the power to move these anti social idiots on!
Namely "get out of town orders" they have the power enshrined in said legislation so why not use it?

Went into town yesterday afternoon (very briefly) and the shouty alchos were in attendance outside peel street lavs and not a copper in site.

Reply Posted by Red Optimist on Friday July 25 2014 at 22:43
I never hear any shouting when I'm in town. Obviously these people reserve their shouting until they see you. Are they friends of yours?

Reply Posted by STEVEO on Saturday July 26 2014 at 10:13
I only ever go into town when absolutely necessary I would rather jump naked into a patch of nettles than spend any time there.

My friends don't go into town either.

It will be interesting to see just how much BMBC cock the new town centre up so I WILL be having a gander once its finished.
Until then its Meadowhall every time for me.

Reply Posted by meadowhall on Saturday July 26 2014 at 15:42
God bless you steveo advertising m/hall on a Barnsley web site you're rite who wants to shop in Barnsley far better choices in Sheffield that mentality is probably why you have the so called by you smackheads you spend you're hard earned cash in m/hall and to hell with Barnsley.

Reply Posted by meadowhell on Saturday July 26 2014 at 15:54
It that above 1 long sentence? Meadowhall what is up with the commas and fullstops.

Reply Posted by STEVEO on Saturday July 26 2014 at 16:18
I will continue to "promote" Meadowhall at every opportunity as I see fit.
I WONT promote shopping in Barnsley town centre until something is done about the smack rats and shouty alchos and BMBC give us a town centre that I/we can be proud of.

Yes you are right, Meadowhall will CONTINUE to get my hard earned and indeed to hell with Barnsley *

*until "my" criteria is met of course , Will be waiting a hell of a long time wont I?

Reply Posted by Red Optimist on Saturday July 26 2014 at 22:51
Loyal To Barnsley then.

Reply Posted by STEVEO on Sunday July 27 2014 at 19:23
Extremely loyal to the three shops that I visit.

Reply Posted by guy fawkes on Friday July 25 2014 at 16:21
Let's build a gas chamber and throw the lot in.

Reply Posted by ? on Friday July 25 2014 at 18:35
Guy do u mean the council or town centre pests

Reply Posted by STEVEO on Friday July 25 2014 at 18:41
Whilst I am not an advocate of Capital Punishment both guy and ? make valid points,,,

Reply Posted by guy fawkes on Friday July 25 2014 at 19:19
My comment was a sarcastic reply help the people who need it most and these poor sods can't fall much further the next step is probably arsdley crem surely there's more to life than what they have for an existence.as regards Barnsley council its just a circus of clowns and sir coco Houghton is the ringmaster.

Reply Posted by Fred on Friday July 25 2014 at 22:45

How can we get rid of the druggies when Boots are dishing out methadone to them all !!!!!

Reply Posted by STEVEO on Saturday July 26 2014 at 10:17
Smack rats are a major scourge in our town, our politically correct governments give it the old "poor Heroin addicts" line and "lets give em methadone and disability benefits".

Lock em up and MAKE em go cold turkey would be preferable but will never happen whilst we have politically correct namby pamby idiots in government.

Reply Posted by anon on Saturday July 26 2014 at 11:47
I agree with that STEVEO

Reply Posted by Philip Taylor on Friday July 25 2014 at 23:27
Look at trinity Wakefield Trinity Leeds look at what works elsewhere look at Huddersfield works good there but have room for speciality shops local craft type shops but please not a carbon copy . Would like a big Italian style Piatza Amsterdam square with shops all round market stalls in the middle give Barnsley a different image style to other shopping centres

Reply Posted by Mike Evans on Saturday July 26 2014 at 09:28
One of the biggest assets is Barnsley market. New tastes with a continental feel should be added. Some decent, accessible cafes (not pubs) and promote tourism to visit the many gems around the district by holding awareness events sponsored and run by the Town Hall.

Reply Posted by ? on Saturday July 26 2014 at 11:00
Barnsley could do a lot more to encourage tourism, elsecar heritage centre could have been a proper industrial museum not a ragtag collection of retail units. Hound hill a civil war site could be made more of, even if in private ownership try to work with owners, how about an archeological trail look at the ancient monuments list and see how many are in the barnsley council area and are notutilised as attractions

Reply Posted by Brian on Saturday July 26 2014 at 14:24
Elsecar Heritage Centre is a vastly under developed asset. It is certainly not a tourist attraction in it's current make up. It is pure and simple managed workspace. The Council should 'get to grips' with the site and turn it in to something worth visiting. If Sir Steven and his colleagues had any vision they would have developed the facility years ago. Shame on them.

Reply Posted by guy fawkes on Saturday July 26 2014 at 14:56
Wonderful Brian now where do we get the money from .

Reply Posted by guy fawkes on Saturday July 26 2014 at 14:54
All the best to Kate rusby a fine example to all the people of Barnsley.

Reply Posted by ok on Saturday July 26 2014 at 18:45
Believe it or not guy, people have a choice whether or not to take heroin. I don't think you'd be saying that if they'd burgled your house to feed their filthy habit.

Reply Posted by guy fawkes on Saturday July 26 2014 at 18:58
Don't believe that for one moment and you shouldn't either are you telling me when Barnsley was plentiful with jobs tell me how many did you see then shouting at steveo none that's the answer none.

Reply Posted by STEVEO on Saturday July 26 2014 at 19:04
Once upon a time there were plentiful jobs in the glass, mining , linen and even further back nail making this was many years ago of course.

As for the shouty alchos I saw, there were four of them and vaguely recognised one that I went to school with.
Smack rat - I was pestered by one of the biggest smack rats of all Guthrie from Higham who asked for £1 for "busfare".
Been a while since I went on a bus but I seriously doubt he'll be able to get to Higham from town for a Quid don't you?

AND yes I was burgled by a smack rat AND had my shed done over by a smack rat exactly the same as hundreds of home owners across the borough since this epidemic descended on our town.

Reply Posted by ian on Saturday July 26 2014 at 19:18
aide from barugh green and went to live at wilthorpe. used to be a smart lad with everything and now a disgrace.

Reply Posted by STEVEO on Saturday July 26 2014 at 19:31
Ian, thanks for that was towing trying to remember his first name!
He wa a good kid as much as I can remember too.

Reply Posted by guy fawkes on Saturday July 26 2014 at 18:47
I've just nearly choked reading that .

Reply Posted by guy fawkes on Saturday July 26 2014 at 19:12
Steveo so what are you saying I am right when there were plenty of jobs there wasn't the problems that you see today .

Reply Posted by STEVEO on Saturday July 26 2014 at 19:38
Yes and No guy...

Drugs have been around for centuries some drugs come into fashion and other go out.
Ecstacy and Amphetimines / LSD in the late 80's which invariably led the users onto the harder stuff.
Back when I went clubbing you never heard of Cocaine but now its everywhere.

Society changes as does the drug of choice, in the early 90's you could get smack on nearly ever street on the village I lived in and some of the streets were no go areas.
I only know of one smack rat that lives in my village and he has been on it since the early 90's....Surprised that he is still walking this earth to be honest after the kicking I gave him for burgling my house.

As for jobs, yup we are desperately in need of jobs in our town if our young uns are to survive and prosper.
It doesn't help when the likes of Asos / Symphony etc etc will only employ foreign workers and actively discriminate against people born and bred in this country.

Been a pleasure talking but I have already said too much so I bid you Adieu ;)

Reply Posted by ok on Saturday July 26 2014 at 19:17
Guy you're talking garbage as per.

Reply Posted by Guy Fawkes on Saturday July 26 2014 at 21:12
Not really it's just all some people are so negative it's nice to try and be positive I remember a time in barnsley when there were no people shouting at Steven but as the jobs and economy went into decline the problem with drugs seem to start if that's garbage you can't handle facts

Reply Posted by ok on Saturday July 26 2014 at 21:50
I hear what your saying guy and a bit of empathy these days is refreshing, especially on this site. But it's misplaced, it's a lifestyle choice for the majority. They don't want help, they don't want to work. Just get off their heads day in day out. Read what @clean says, he's seen it first hand. Maybe it's you who can't face facts.

Reply Posted by guy fawkes on Saturday July 26 2014 at 22:40
So what is the answer to the problem?

Reply Posted by guy fawkes on Saturday July 26 2014 at 22:55
Unless we tackle this problem espeacialy in a financially starved by the government area what does the future here hold for us who live in Barnsley ,the kids playing in the pals fountains.

Reply Posted by Oliver CromwelI on Saturday July 26 2014 at 22:21
Well done stevo you have managed to change this post into your own personal crusade what a ego you have you talk popularism and have an hidden and personal agenda nothing to do with the said post

Reply Posted by guy fawkes on Saturday July 26 2014 at 22:50
He likes to blow his own trumpet and rarely admits it when his debate is floored by a rational answer to a post.

Reply Posted by Oliver CromwelI on Saturday July 26 2014 at 22:58
Not at all if you read is post you will find he or she is going with the majority and as nothing that is constructive to the post to build a new Barnsley takes imagination look at Manchester lliverpool Huddersfield what's needed is an new innovation for town centres I'm afraid that stevo and people like him are a thing of the past

Reply Posted by Oliver CromwelI on Saturday July 26 2014 at 23:00
I hate predictive text

Reply Posted by ~~~~~ on Saturday July 26 2014 at 23:10
Can't see any rational answers either.

Reply Posted by rainbow on Sunday July 27 2014 at 10:34
Keep building Supermarkets with free car parking on the outskirts of the town and they wonder why the town centre is Dying.???? Do we realy need Manchester university to slove the problem.!!!

Reply Posted by ? on Sunday July 27 2014 at 15:50
Lets try to get back on track, as I stated earlier on this thread more needs to be made of existing attractions and sites in the BMBC controlled area. And in a post from last year i said that there is nothing wrong with large retail parks outside of the town centre for large retailers. Then it leaves a town centre we could use for small retailers, start up businesses and boutique/specialists shops ( may sound like a niche market but would stand out). Also get the market back to its former glory, reduce rates and give free parking

Reply Posted by guy fawkes on Sunday July 27 2014 at 21:02
More water features seating and planted areas.

Reply Posted by STEVEO on Sunday July 27 2014 at 19:30
I agree with ?, some people do dominate posts on here but they have bi gobs and always have something to say... (don't they STEVEO - YES STEVEO)

Of course I would LOVE a town centre that catered to my every needs, I used to love town in the 80's there was great choice and plenty of record shops.

The jewel in Barnsleys Crown is the Arcade and even if I just nip into town for a bit of this and that I ALWAYS enjoy walking down there, in fact even if I don't intend to buy anything from the Arcade I always make a point of walking up or down it.

I looked at renting a shop up the arcade a few years ago and the rents were far too high for me unfortunately.

I used to love the market too but walked round recently and it was a shadow of its former self.
Despite my rants earlier, I fervently hope that BMBC will do us proud and give us a NEW town centre that WE can be proud of for future generations.

Reply Posted by STEVEO on Monday July 28 2014 at 19:57
Aladdins cave stall on't market, that can buy all soorts a bits n bobs off their.

Reply Posted by Neil on Monday July 28 2014 at 13:00
Having worked in Barnsley in the town centre for years I used to look at the bags people carried ( because im sad) they were red striped (butchers) (white) charlesworths , (green) marks spencers and a big primark odd sports direct .

they want clean,safe and lots of choice with a good varied market not 20 charity shops it has to be a experience now as the online choice is so great and the service, price and delivery is great

what folk want is easy parking that they don't get fined if they are 10 mins late , ease of getting their .its 20 mins to get into Barnsley from most villages yet i can get into wakefield in 15mins and its 2 miles further.

Reply Posted by anon on Monday July 28 2014 at 13:45
I think the parking is fine to be fair. There seems to be a gap for ladies clothes,the younger end are well catered for,but apart from Marks theres nothing. Its a pity BHS has moved out, and gone to the retail parks. I reckon the retail parks will kill off the town centres,they are heaving on Sundays. Its difficult to know just what to put into Barnsley,but I hope it can be turned around somehow. As for independant niche shops,its a massive gamble to open up, custom cant be guarranteed. Maybe thats where the market could come in. Differant sections,indoor for clothing,a seperate section for food and outdoors for fruit and veg. Renting a stall would be more cost effective and who knows the stall holder may then do so well that a shop would be a step up. Whatever happens,its a big task thats for sure.

Reply Posted by rainbow on Monday July 28 2014 at 14:56
Barnsley market is closing down after 3-30 pm, what's the point shopping there if your working while 5pm.? As for the remaining shops very few offer high quality goods so unless your looking for a second hand bargain the town is not the place to shop these days, sad but true.!!!

Reply Posted by Ray on Monday July 28 2014 at 16:50
Following this admission finally that they don't have a bloody clue. Will the bigwigs in charge at the council who were supposed to do the job years ago be handing their salaries back then? No? thought not

Reply Posted by Red Optimist on Monday July 28 2014 at 17:08
There's people at the council being paid well in excess of £100,000 per annum (Chief Executive circa £170,000) and we have to bring a team of kids in to advise us. WHAT ARE WE PAYING THESE PEOPLE FOR. Get a grip Steve.

Reply Posted by bluesky on Monday July 28 2014 at 20:50
Nobody cares for markets except the elderly plus they vlose too early and staff are less than friendly. Parking is too dear and the roads in to town too slow and busy. Too many out of town shops and supermarkets and the indie shops that people say they want will be by their nature too expensive. At the moment too much money is spent in the wrong areas of town. Too many unemployed wandering around up to no good. Too many cheap shops eg charity, pasty and pubs. Not enough enforcement of legislation. Plus the bus and train station has always been inthe wrong place. Oh and it looks run down. Apart from that..........

Reply Posted by kilkenny on Monday July 28 2014 at 21:06
when has a pub been cheap?

Reply Posted by Brian on Tuesday July 29 2014 at 19:14
Generally only the elderly use the market. I agree with that comment. However, that is only because younger people are not wise enough to know how good the market really is.

Reply Posted by to Brian on Wednesday July 30 2014 at 20:46
I think you meant how good the market was in the 70,s 80,s. not now.

Reply Posted by Brian on Wednesday July 30 2014 at 22:27
Of course it was better in previous times, but it is still a reasonable market today.

Reply Posted by sue on Monday July 28 2014 at 21:16
Sadly I agree with blue sky on many points. For myself,its a dash round the supermarket where I buy for the weekly shop and then as I work,I make "nice shopping" a treat. Out for Sunday lunch,usually Italian and then a stroll round York. Enjoy the department stores with thier goodies, and the atmosphere of the place.Life's changing and shopping isn't a drudge its a pleasure if you mix it up. Its a shame really but its not a treat to shop in Barnsley now.

Reply Posted by sue on Monday July 28 2014 at 21:21
To add to my post above though, any work I need doing,house,garden etc,I ALWAYS employ local business. I would use Barnsley to shop if it was nice and I could have a lovely day out there. I hope it can be changed for the better.

Reply Posted by eh on Monday July 28 2014 at 21:36
2 things, only old people use the market?? and the unemployed wandering round up to no good!? Wtf. Is this clown for real?

Reply Posted by sue on Monday July 28 2014 at 22:02
You've hi lighted the points @eh from @bluesky which I don't agree on. The rest of the post though is true.

Reply Posted by Jason on Wednesday July 30 2014 at 10:33
Great debate and interesting points of view. Rather than "pay" someone from Manchester to tell us what we need why not......wait for it.....ask the businesses in town what they need to see. I have a business on Old Doncaster Road, gift and coffee shop and it's not the only stand out business on this street. Parking is an issue, private landlord rents are very high even on the outskirts. We need quality signage, incentives for small business, free advertising, our streets cleaning, the alhambra underpass sorting out, zero tolerance for anti social behaviour and enough people like me who actually care what happens to the town.....I could go on and on.

Reply Posted by Red Optimist on Wednesday July 30 2014 at 15:14
You talk sense there Jason, that's why Barnsley Council will not want to talk to you about the town centre. Leading councillors and council heads of departments have only limited business acumen. I doubt whether any heads of departments live in the borough.

Reply Posted by sid on Wednesday July 30 2014 at 21:15
I agree jason with most of your post,but its your business so buy your own signage and advertising. I'm not sure why you think funding should be made for those? Not being sarcy there. But the rest, yes.

Reply Posted by Kc on Wednesday July 30 2014 at 12:54
That should be top of the list, zero tolerance for anti social behaviour.

Reply Posted by Fred on Thursday July 31 2014 at 13:03
Rita (the owner of pollyanna and one of the most successful buisness women Barnsley has to offer) pleaded with Steve Houghton for years to do something with the Town Centre and even offered her advice but he wasn't intrested and her advice fell on deaf ears.

Now they want to work with Manchester uni to try and reverse the Town Centre's decline. This just goes to show what a bunch of idiots we have at the Town Hall.

The blame lies with BMBC, Houghton and his cronies!