Boat trips on the River Trent and a special dining experience could make Burton’s Bargates site a "flagship" entrance to the town.

You have been having your say on what you would like to see happen at the old Bargates site in Burton town centre on the edge of of the River Trent. It comes after it was revealed the mothballed site is to undergo a £20 million redevelopment.

Many welcomed the news that the site will be reused 10 years after Superbowl 2000 shut its doors to make way for a planned Tesco superstore, which was later scrapped.

But some felt planners had "missed an opportunity" to enhance the river frontage in line with similar developments seen at the marinas in Barton and Willington.

The Burton Mail recently revealed the seven-acre Bargates site, off High Street, Burton, could now be turned into 68 homes and flats, a 72 two-bedroom sheltered housing block and two shops.

The development planned for Bargates

The plans also include a café area with indoor and outdoor seating and views across the River Trent Washlands.

Jessup Build Develop has submitted a full planning application to East Staffordshire Borough Council for the redevelopment of the former shopping centre and bowling site.

You have been having your say on the site via social media. Here is what some of you think should happen:

Leah Wilcox praised the positioning of the sheltered accommodation in the town centre.
She said: "Good. We’re all harping on about people living longer yet many older people’s homes or villages are miles away from anything, making the elderly and their visiting families isolated.

"This is a great idea. It will bring jobs and visitors to the centre making more revenue."

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Patricia Platt agreed, writing on the Burton Mail’s Facebook page: "About time something was done. Good get the old people in town so they cannot be isolated."

However, many other readers believed there should be entertainment for children on the site in place of housing.

Michael Whetton said: "Need to do something for kids to go not more houses."
While Mark Whitehead questioned why there was nothing for the younger generation in the plans, saying: "So the young don't matter anymore."

On the Burton Mail’s website, EveryonesALegend also bemoaned more housing: "You guessed it ... more housing! Burton's going to be known as the town of concrete."

The scheme is set to cost £20 million

Others suggested ideas which could be incorporated into the site.
Autumn36 wrote: "Why don't they just rebuild the bowling alley and build other leisure/things to do.

"If people want to do that they have to travel out. Surely having something like bowling again will encourage more people into Burton, as well as benefit Burton rather than having houses there."

Lisa Gower has fond memories of Burton’s bowling alley, saying: "It would be nice to have a dining experience looking out of the river, a bar and Pizza Hut maybe. My husband told me first time he loved me in the bowling."

Paul Salmon was simple in his request: "I don’t really mind what’s there as long as it isn’t another coffee shop."

Amazing new pictures showing the proposed future of Bargates

Others believe it will only more problems for an already gridlocked town.

Another Burton Mail reader, known only as Burtonian said: "My comments strongly question the proposals of a predominantly residential development in what is an important riverside frontage site overlooking the Washlands that will be seen as a major 'flagship' entrance to the town from the historic Trent Bridge.

"Unfortunately, there is the feeling of a 'missed opportunity' and a more visionary plan to enhance the river frontage with similar developments seen at the marinas in Barton and Willington, which have been commercially successful for the area would generate leisure and recreation enjoyment by the river for the whole Burton community and visitors to the town.

The so-called 'green village' will be cleared for the development

"An alternative development of the site including a hotel/conference centre with terracing would be the main attraction adjacent the bridge supplemented with a mixture of bars/restaurants/ shops as a riverside frontage and promenade walk.

"Residential provision of riverside apartments; terraced housing provision (including shops/offices rental) and sheltered housing could be provided to the remainder of the site with the reinstatement of a frontage along High Street.

Bargates will also consist of two shops

"Stratford-upon-Avon and Worcester make full use of their river frontage location with their historical attractions and there is no reason why Burton could not provide the industrial heritage that the nearby National Brewery Museum offer with organised rides and trips to and on the Trent at this riverside location as part of the main tourist attraction to the town.

"To see boats along the Trent once again and moored where the old Victorian Swimming Baths site stood off the Trent Bridge would encourage people to the river and Washlands recreational facilities."

Cannock-based Jessup Build Develop in Cannock will buy the land from the council if it is granted permission by the planning committee.

Time Line

Burton's Bargates

  1. MARCH 2004

    Council admits the Riverside Leisure Centre, known as Bargates, had become an embarrassment with just a few units open, including Superbowl 200 which still had 14 years on its lease and had 'no desire to move'.

  2. SEPTEMBER 2004

    The council reveals a cafe quarter plan for Bargates with accommodation, bars, cafe and a hotel.

  3. MAY 2005

    The Mail exclusively reveals that the council has lined up a deal with Tesco, which would see Bargates turned into a giant Tesco Extra store. The deal in principle included Tesco paying the council £8 million towards the cost of a new leisure centre to replace the Meadowside, which would have been demolished under the plans.

  4. AUGUST 2007

    One of the last remaining units on Riverside, Indian restaurant Manzil, moves to the former Ocean nightclub, off Guild Street, where it remains to this day.

  5. AUGUST 19, 2007

    Superbowl 2000 closes to make way for the Tesco development. At the time Superbowl owner Jerry Hodges said he was keen to relocate and was looking for a site in Burton.

  6. DECEMBER 2007

    The council pulls out of a deal with Tesco to demolish the neighbouring Meadownside Leisure Centre due to sky-rocketing costs. An application for the Riverside Centre is still expected to be submitted.

  7. FEBRUARY 2008

    Arsonists strike at former Superbowl 2000.

  8. NOVEMBER 2008

    A Tesco plan to build nine glass-fronted retail units on the site is unanimously rejected by council planners after the scheme is branded as "unimaginative".

  9. DECEMBER 1, 2009

    Three options are listed for Bargates' future: a residential-led redevelopment, a retail-led redevelopment or a mixture of both.

  10. MAY 30, 2010

    Tesco indicates a willingness to relinquish the site and move to the former Condor site, which never came to fruition. Proposals are put forward for a mix of retail, office and residential buildings, including a hotel overlooking the River Trent.

  11. JUNE 3, 2010

    Tesco installs large wooden boards to screen the eyesore from public view.

  12. JUNE 15, 2010

    East Staffordshire Borough Council announces its intention to appoint a developer by the end of 2010.

  13. SEPTEMBER 21, 2010

    Tesco's board of directors agrees the sale of the site to East Staffordshire Borough Council for £4 million.

  14. APRIL 12, 2011

    Meanwhile, Tesco is given permission for a superstore in Hawkins Lane. This plan never came to fruition after financial difficulties led Tesco to put the site up for sale.

  15. FEBRUARY 2, 2012

    Demolition begins at the Bargates site.

  16. MAY 28, 2012

    The council announces Bargates will be turned into a 'village green'.

  17. JULY 4 2012

    The council puts up 'The Bargates Job' on the site.

  18. FEBRUARY 21, 2013

    The council announces it has full ownership of Bargates and it is up for sale – maintaining the preferred mixed use option in a bid to attract developers.

  19. JULY 15, 2014

    Councillors reveal plans to spend part of a £1.5 million grant on making Bargates more attractive. It came after work started to improve the appearance of shops opposite, to show the authority was keen to regenerate High Street.

  20. MAY 2015

    Councillor Richard Grosvenor, leader of East Staffordshire Borough Council, said the authority was hoping to work in partnership with other agencies to bring sheltered housing to the site.

  21. JANUARY 2016

    A major developer is in talks to buy Bargates but discussions break down in March.

  22. AUGUST 2016

    Contractors were spotted drilling on the site to ascertain the site's development costs.

  23. SEPTEMBER 2016

    It is revealed a deal has been struck for offices and extra-care facilities on Bargates.

  24. AUGUST 2017

    Developer Jessup Build Develop reveals a planning application could be submitted in September.

  25. December 2017

    Jessup Build Develop submit planning application to East Staffordshire Borough Council

  26. January 2018

    Jessup Build Develop hold public consultation at Meadowside Leisure Centre. Burton Civic Society formally objects to the proposals

  27. February 2018

    The consultation period ends and objections submitted by Burton Parish Council and Burton Bridge Brewery are revealed.