The art deco frontage of the former Beales building on Queen Street, Mansfield town centre.

First look at plans to transform disused Mansfield department store Beales into Civic Hub

Multi-million-pound plans to transform the former Beales department store in Mansfield town centre have been unveiled.

Saturday, 23rd July 2022, 11:25 am
Updated Saturday, 23rd July 2022, 12:17 pm

The scheme to turn into a civic hub has been formally presented to the Mansfield Place Board, featuring strategic, community and business leaders.

Mansfield Council said the £25.75-million Mansfield Connect scheme ‘forms a key part of the council’s ambitious, long-term, town centre regeneration plans and its £20m bid to the Government's Levelling Up Fund’.

The proposal would see the 1930s’ art deco building extended and modernised to provide a new headquarters for the council, alongside a variety of other agencies.

Board members heard how Mansfield Connect would ‘improve the co-ordination and delivery of public services, generate extra footfall in the town centre and act as a catalyst for wider development, stimulating both the day and night time economy in the town centre’.

Andy Abrahams, Mansfield mayor, said: “If our bid to the Levelling Up Fund is successful, this scheme will offer a once-in-a-generation opportunity to develop new solutions to the challenges facing the town and district.

“Repurposing this landmark building will act as a kind of renaissance by bringing to life a new integrated space, which will then stimulate the local economy and encourage private sector investment.

“This really would be levelling up in action and it would also be a boost to the delivery of public services by consolidating them into one town centre space.”

The building, which boasts 158,940 sq feet of accommodation across five floors, has been empty since Beales collapsed in February 2020.The Department for Work and Pensions, Nottinghamshire Council, West Nottinghamshire College, Nottingham Trent University, NHS health partners and volunteering co-ordinator the CVS have already expressed interest in being involved in the new hub.The council's submission to the LUF will be made before the second round deadline of August 2 – the council said the Fund is ‘targeted towards places with the most significant needs in terms of economic recovery, regeneration and growth and improved transport and connectivity’.

Mansfield has been ranked at level one out of three by the Government, putting it among those areas with the greatest need.

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