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South Ayrshire Council to plunge £417K into series of Ayr Town Centre projects

In a significant move towards revitalising Ayr Town Centre, South Ayrshire Council has announced a substantial investment of £417,000 earmarked for a series of 'early win' projects.

This financial injection forms a crucial part of the ambitious Ayr Town Centre Framework, which aims to breathe new life into the town's core over the forthcoming decade.

Among the initiatives unveiled, the first to make headlines is the launch of a Shop Front Improvement Scheme. With an allocation of £222,000, the scheme is designed to assist eligible business and property owners, along with tenants, in enhancing their shop fronts, contributing to the aesthetic appeal of the town centre.

Further bolstering the town's cultural and entertainment offerings, the council is supporting Merlin Cinemas Limited with a £70,000 contribution towards the refurbishment of Astoria Ayr. This investment aims at the external renovation of the venue, previously known as the Odeon Cinema, ensuring it stands out as a premier destination for film enthusiasts.

Additionally, a grant of £90,000 is set to transform Newmarket Street, a beloved part of Ayr. This funding will facilitate improvements in branding, signage, urban dressing, and lighting. These enhancements, carried out in collaboration with the Newmarket Street Traders group, promise to inject vibrancy and attract more visitors to the area.

Completing the suite of projects, £35,000 has been allocated to bolster a series of events, exhibitions, and activities at the Cutty-Sark and the Grain Exchange. These venues, already popular attractions, are expected to draw increased footfall to the high street, enriching the town's cultural landscape.

Councillor Bob Pollock, holding the Economic Development Portfolio for South Ayrshire Council, expressed enthusiasm about the initiative:

“This is a welcome boost for Ayr. While the Ayr Town Centre Framework provides a route map for the next ten years, it’s vital that we continue to support smaller projects and initiatives that help make a difference to businesses and the wider community.”

Echoing this sentiment, Councillor Alec Clark, who oversees Tourism, Culture, and Rural Affairs, highlighted the importance of these projects, however small in scale they might be.

“Well maintained shops help to entice customers, and it’s important that the new cinema looks its best. Building on our event programme also has many benefits, especially when we have two superb venues that encourage people to visit Ayr High Street.”

This suite of projects represents a concerted effort by South Ayrshire Council to revitalise Ayr Town Centre, promising a blend of aesthetic, cultural, and commercial rejuvenation aimed at securing the town's prosperity for the next decade and beyond.


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