First meeting of team tackling future of retail in Castletown

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A team tasked with attracting retail businesses to Castletown brought together by the Department of Economic Development has held its first meeting.

It follows a survey of the town carried out by retail expert Martin Sewell and commissioned by the department.

Mr Sewell identified lack of car parking is a major problem. His report includes: the recommendation the fire station site on Farrant’s Way (which is to move) becomes a car park; target employers to relocate to town; obtain ‘sustainable’ tenants in Callow’s Yard; and hold events.

The team comprises traders, local authority representatives and Mr Sewell.

At last Monday’s authority meeting, Alwyn Collister said: ‘It’s seeing the town goes forward, there is too much empty property.’

Colin Leather said: ‘It was a vibrant meeting, a lot of discussion went on and if it carries on like that it will do a lot of good for people with businesses or premises in town.’

Andrew Thomas asked about the cost, and clerk Eddie Convery said: ‘Martin Sewell gets paid by government.’

Mr Collister said Mr Sewell is on a six-month contract and he added the team will hold its next meeting on January 14.

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