COUNCILLORS involved in the decision making for the future of the Northwich Outdoor Market site say any future landscaping must be suitable for use.

Cheshire West and Chester Council, after consulting with neighbouring businesses and Northwich BID, is looking at landscaping the site and installing outdoor seating.

It is proposed that the seating area will be used by hospitality businesses in the town centre to allow more covers without fears of breaching social distancing measures.

But the vague nature of the term ‘landscaping’ raised concerns from councillors during this month’s Northwich Town Council meeting.

Outlining the future of the site, Cllr Andrew Cooper said: “In that area, you have Vinny’s, Abda, Salty Dog, NW Salt Bar and other small eateries and drinkeries which don’t have a lot of outdoor space.

“A landscaped area with tables and chairs would really help them by giving an al fresco dining option.

“This is the course that the council is pursuing at the moment, and we should have more details on this in the coming weeks.

“It is something Cllr Sam Naylor and I have been pushing for over the course of lockdown while the town centre has been effectively shut and the demolition has been taking place.”

Northwich Guardian:

The demolition of the fire-ravaged outdoor market (Credit: Gilroy Wilson Shoes)

Cllr Helen Rowlands raised concerns over what form the landscaping would take, after hearing that tarmac could be an option.

In response, Cllr Sam Naylor said: “The landscaping options have not been decided upon yet, but there are options on the table.

“Andrew and I will not be dictated to about what we will be getting, as it has to be something that people of the town will find pleasing.

“There isn’t a tremendous amount of money available, but we don’t want a cheap option which will not solve the problem.

“It must be suitable with some weatherproofing that will attract people into the town and can be utilised by local businesses, and the surface must be able to take a reasonable amount of footfall.

“Another option could be artificial grass, but we want something which can last for a couple of years that can be used by residents and businesses alike.”