A ‘VISION’ setting out an “exciting and compelling future” for Kendal is to be developed by a public/private sector partnership and be used as a “mandate” to encourage investment in the town.

Martyn Nicholson, chair of Kendal Futures, said the aim of the ‘regeneration partnership’ was for Kendal to be “the best market town in the UK to work, visit, invest and live.”

The partnership has now outlined plans to produce a document or ‘vision’ for the town, a process which will involve public consultation and is being backed by several of Kendal’s major employers, land owners and other private sector organisations.

The views of the local community will be “fundamental” to the development of this vision, and there will be a ‘community participation weekend’ in October, which will provide an opportunity for local people to share their knowledge and contribute to shaping the vision by, for example, taking part in public workshops.

Kendal Futures has appointed landscape architects Farrer Huxley and masterplanners JTP to deliver the vision because of “their strong track record in public engagement.”

Though Farrer Huxley is a London-based firm, director Noel Farrer lives at Meathop and went to school in Kendal.

He stressed those delivering the vision were very “open minded” about what form it would take. However, giving a few examples of issues that might be addressed, he said: “We’re interested in all the big things that are happening in Kendal at the moment. What are the big things?

“Clearly housing is a key issue; lack of children in our schools; not enough of the right type of employment for young people to get them to stay; the vulnerability of businesses on our high streets; the flooding; what do we think about a northern bypass; what do we think about traffic.”

He added that the finished document will be used as a “mandate” to encourage public and private investment in Kendal.

Regarding the vision, Paula Scott, project manager with Kendal Futures, said: “It will not be a masterplan - it will be more creative and ideas-based and aspirational.

“This is what the people of Kendal would like the town to look like over the next 20 years.”

She added: “We are trying to get everybody together to see what we can aim for as a town and we hope it will help us to find new ways of funding this work.”

The workshops will take place on Friday, October 4 and Saturday, October 5 2019 at The Shakespeare Centre, Highgate, Kendal. Doors open at 1.45pm on the Friday and 11am on the Saturday. There is no need to pre-register.