PLANS for a major regeneration of Winchester City have been officially adopted, civic chiefs have confirmed.

Winchester City Council has confirmed that as no challenges were lodged against the supplementary planning document (SPD) for the Silver Hill 2 scheme, officially known as the Central Winchester Regeneration (CWR) project, the document has been fully adopted.

Since the plans were provisionally adopted in June, the city council has already begun implementing changes in the 4.5hectare area, which includes the bus station, The Broadway, St Clements Medical Centre, Kings Walk, Friarsgate Car Park, the former Antique Market building and Woolstapler’s Hall.

As previously reported, the former Antique Market building has been taken over by creative group Nutshell Arts and has been rebranded as ‘The Nutshell’. It will be used as a place for rehearsals, workshops, exhibitions and small-scale productions, alongside resident companies the Discarded Nut Theatre Company and ENCORE Youth Theatre.

The move represented one of the short-term aims for improving the Silver Hill area.

In addition, new gin workshop The Blend Academy, run by Winchester Distillery, opened in the space above Poundland in Middle Brook Street this week.

Cllr Caroline Horrill, city council leader and chairman of the CWR committee, said: “There is much to do, and the committee is energised and determined to move forward apace.”

Following the collapse of the first scheme with development partner THRE, the city council is proposing in the SPD to develop the area in a more piecemeal fashion.

The THRE scheme, mainly offices, flats and parking was derided for being too big for the city centre.