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Conservation team shines the spotlight on Somerset shop windows

By Wells Journal  |  Posted: September 29, 2012

The study of shop windows aims to make sure the district’s urban centres are creating a good first impression

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A closer look at shop windows is under way.

Mendip District Council's heritage conservation team are looking at the best way for the district's towns to make a first impression on visitors and they want the help of the public in finding out each community's individual identity.

Rob Palmer, from the heritage conservation team said: "The renewal and improvement of shopfronts is a critical factor in determining the appearance of our shopping areas, many of which are within the oldest areas of our towns."

"It's because so many of our high streets are within conservation areas that great care and thought should be given to the design for shopfronts."

A new Shopfront Design Guide is being created aimed to assist and provide practical guidance for all those involved in the repairing, replacing and proposing changes to the external appearance of retail premises within historic areas.

The draft document produced by Mendip District Council is now out for consultation.

The consultation period will last for four weeks and gives local residents, business owners and planning agents a chance to comment on the draft document before it's adopted.

Nigel Woollcombe-Adams, portfolio holder for built environment, said: "It's important that we protect the character and design of our shopping areas as these are the front that many people see when they visit Mendip."

"Creating a good first impression is what will bring tourists back in the future and I believe that this draft document will go towards ensuring that this is achieved."

The report is available to view online at www.mendip.gov.uk.

Hard copies will also be available at Council Access Points throughout the district, as well as the main council offices at Shepton Mallet.

Members of the public are able to comment on the appraisal by post to Mendip District Council, Cannards Grave Road, Shepton Mallet, BA4 5BT or by emailing customer services@mendip.gov.uk, clearly marking it for the attention of Robert Palmer.

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