'What makes Thetford, Thetford?': A project set to change the town's future
- Credit: Canva/Breckland Council
International designer Wayne Hemingway and his team have spent the last year trying to find out what makes Thetford, Thetford.
Working closely with local councils, residents, businesses and community organisations, Mr Hemingway aims to create a “place brand” using “core values” to put the town back on the map as destination for tourists, businesses and families to live.
These core values will be decided using the results of a digital survey - where the community shared their views about the town - which was sent out earlier this year.
“Our job is not to come in and stamp what Thetford is on the town. How could we possibly do that?” he said.
“Our job is to use our experience of gathering what people say and pulling that together and then playing it back to everybody and saying, ‘have we got this right?’.
Mr Hemingway said the town’s core values, which will be taken from the survey, will help to make important decisions on anything from housing developments to park benches.
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Sam Chapman-Allen, leader of Breckland Council, said the authority was "delighted" to be working with Mr Hemingway.
“For over 1,000 years Thetford has been reinventing itself," he said in a previous interview.
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“The town has now grown into a modern town with a diverse and strong multi-cultural community and a mixture of local and multinational businesses.
“We want to drive the further transformation and innovation of the town and I invite all of the community and local organisations to get involved in building a Thetford where everyone can thrive and prosper.”
Mr Hemingway, who has been involved in similar regeneration projects across the country, including in Lowestoft, said at the launch earlier this year: “It’s important that this future vision is for Thetford, by Thetford – our role is to listen to the people who know the town best, and translate their experience into an honest, aspirational and achievable future story for this great place.”