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King Street, Wigan High Street Heritage Action Zone

By reusing and reviving beautiful historic buildings such as the Grade II listed Royal Court Theatre, Wigan Council plan to work with partners like Arts in the Mill CIC to engage locals and visitors in a rich array of cultural activity.

Wigan's High Street Heritage Action Zone focuses on King Street within the Wigan Town Centre Conservation Area. The conservation area was first designated in 1980 and covers around 10 hectares of the town centre.

King Street sits towards the southern part of the conservation area and is one of the main streets in Wigan town centre, close to the Market Place and between the rail stations and the civic hub. Despite this central location, it has traditionally been a focal point for entertainment and commercial uses rather than retail.

In recent times its character has shifted to focus almost exclusively on late-night bars and nightclubs and it is now in a cycle of decline - there are very high vacancy rates, the quality of the streetscape is poor and fractured and the historic fabric is under threat.

How the King Street, Wigan High Street Heritage Action Zone will help

With £1.3 million of government funding, delivered through Historic England, the aim is that King Street will be celebrated as the 'go to' place for Wigan residents and visitors to engage in cultural and leisure activities by 2024. This aligns well with Wigan Borough Council's Cultural Manifesto – The Fire Within, which aims to tackle Wigan's low cultural participation.

Its mix of uses will mean that King Street has something for everyone during both the daytime and evening. Its strong sense of place will be reinforced through the reuse of its beautiful historic buildings, attractive streetscape and network of characterful alleyways.

Stay up to date

Below you can find just some of the progress being made in the Wigan High Street Heritage Action Zone. For more, follow us on Twitter @HistoricEngland

  • Restoration work is underway at the Grade II listed Royal Court Theatre
  • Repairs to Grimes Arcade are due to start on site in 2022
  • Wigan Council is developing a programme of improvements to the streetscape on King Street which will be delivered in 2022
  • Through a partnership with Wigan and Leigh College, the High Street Heritage Action Zone hopes to provide learning and training opportunities for local construction students
  • More on what's new in your area

Working in partnership with

  • Wigan Borough Council is leading the delivery of King Street’s High Street Heritage Action Zone in conjunction with Arts in the Mill CIC, Wigan Community Partnership as well as a host of cultural partners across from across the borough.

High Streets

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