Business as usual in the High Street as repaving gets underway

Work begins this week to repave Winchester High Street.

The High Street scheme will see new natural York stone paving laid along the length of the High Street from Middle Brook Street to Jewry Street, and, off the High Street: Parchment Street, Upper Brook Street, Market Street, St Maurice’s Covert and the Buttercross area.

Mildren Construction, appointed by Hampshire County Council and Winchester City Council to carry out the work, will start at the bottom of the High Street between Middle Brook Street and Upper Brook Street. People will be able access all shops and buildings in the High Street and side roads throughout the duration of the works.

The first stage of the £2.2 million scheme will involve replacing and re-lining Southern Water’s underground storm water drain.  This part of the work has been carefully planned and co-ordinated with Southern Water as the drain would need repair within the next five years in any case.  By mid-October, the first slabs of new paving will be laid.  New benches of natural oak and black steel, signposts and litter bins will be installed as sections of repaving are completed.

The work will be done in four phases in order to keep the High Street open for business as usual at all times.  The first phase, from Middle Brook Street to Upper Brook Street, will be completed by 14 November when works will stop completely for the Christmas shopping period.  During this work, the section of the High Street between Middle Brook Street and Upper Brook Street will be closed to vehicles and a diversion will be put in place.  The second phase, from Upper Brook Street to Parchment Street will begin on 3 January. 

Councillor Ken Thornber, Leader of Hampshire County Council, said: “Once completed, the new pavement will be a fine asset to this historic and vibrant city – it will be better for everyone who uses it, for businesses, for tourists, for shoppers, for residents.  While there will be some diversions for vehicles in place, I would like to emphasise that a great deal of thought and planning has gone into making sure that the High Street stays open for business during the works.”

Councillor George Beckett, Leader of Winchester City Council, said: "We understand the importance of enhancing the current High Street whilst maintaining a 'business as usual' situation. This will mean that over the Christmas shopping season when there will be a seven week break in the work. I am delighted that this exciting project is now underway, and I hope it will ultimately have a positive impact on our historic High Street for all those who use it".