Regent Circus, Swindon

Client: Ashfield LandLocation: SwindonScale: 12,000 sq mStatus: Phase 1: completed and trading. Phase 2: under construction

Regent Circus, Swindon

Kick-starting regeneration in Swindon’s town centre

The completion of Regent Circus has seen the delivery of the first major regeneration scheme within Swindon town centre.

The site comprised the former town centre campus of Swindon College, a car park, and a collection of run-down 1960s buildings which were in a state of disrepair – a magnet for anti-social behaviour, and widely regarded as an eyesore. The site also includes the Grade II Listed former Technical College, also in a state of disrepair.

Working on behalf of the developer Ashfield Land, our role included the preparation of a Development Brief for the site. We then prepared and submitted a detailed planning application for Phase 1, which was granted consent in 2011. Finally, we prepared detailed applications for planning permission and listed building consent for Phase 2, which were granted in 2015.

Phase 1 of the scheme, which opened for trading in January 2015 includes a Morrisons superstore, a multiscreen cinema, restaurants, and car parking. Phase 2 includes provision for serviced apartments within the Grade II Listed former Technical College Building, and is due for completion at the end of 2016.

The scheme also includes significant improvements to public realm and place, including the creation of a new public ‘square’ and improved pedestrian connectivity between the site and the wider town centre. Throughout the project, Turley carried out intensive negotiations with the local planning authority and engaged with the local community, particularly in respect of layout and finishes. Together, this helped secure a successful outcome for the client, and a major programme of investment for the town.

Regent Circus now successfully ‘anchors’ the southern end of Swindon town centre, and has markedly improved the vitality and viability of the area, creating a new sense of ‘place’ for people who work, live and relax there.