Stockport Council seeking input to create more family-friendly town centre

Stockport Council is looking to hear from parents, grandparents and carers as part of plans to make Stockport town centre a family friendlier place to visit.

The Council is currently engaging with residents, seeking their input on new plans to transform empty retail units in Merseyway into an innovative new Learning and Discovery space.

The working title for the new concept is Stockroom – and Stockport Council’s vision is for a place where families, across the generations can spend time exploring together. Stockroom will provide a welcoming new arrival point in the centre of town and be equipped with new state of the art changing and toilet facilities.

The Council has secured £14.5m from the Government’s Future High Street Scheme for the Stockroom concept and now wants to hear directly from residents, including parents with young families, to further inform their thinking to date.

Part of the new scheme will be a designated Family Zone which will be free to access, the Council team are keen to explore a number of uses that this could include.

These uses could range from a sensory room (designed to provide an enjoyable or calming multisensory experience for people, young and old, with a wide variety of different abilities) to new spaces for school music and theatre performances to be enjoyed by all generations.

The Council also want to hear new ideas from residents and is particularly keen to ensure that these new facilities will contribute to improving children’s development, health and access to opportunities in later life.

The engagement team will be in the town centre over the weekends of the 24th and 31st July and will be equipped with tablets to capture responses from passers-by.

As Stockport continues to take this next significant step in creating a family friendlier town centre, the Council is delighted to welcome a range of activities in the town centre across the coming weeks, starting with the return of the Gigantic Leap Frog Art Trail for 2021, with 21 brand new, gigantic frogs distributed across the town centre. Look out at for staff from the engagement team who will be in town talking with people about Stockroom and what could be included.

Cllr David Meller, Cabinet Member for Economy and Regeneration, said: “We want to encourage people to rediscover the town centre and what better way than to take part in a free fun family activity. We want children and young people to find the city centre welcoming and safe.

“The more families we speak with, the better we can reflect their needs and wants in the design of Stockroom. We want people to tell us what activities and services they would most like to see in Stockroom, and I would encourage everyone to fill in the online survey.”

The survey can be found at http://orlo.uk/DU5s0.