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Warwick District Council is working with Complex Development Projects (CDP) to deliver a new Creative Quarter for Leamington Spa. This is an ambitious and creative regeneration project for the Old Town that will create new spaces to support the town's important creative industries.

The Creative Quarter will not only restore several key buildings but also create a new gateway into the town, as well as improve the routes and environment from the railway station to the town centre. It will support the growth of the district's thriving creative community by establishing a sustainable creative place in Royal Leamington Spa. A number of these projects are supported by the Governments 'Future High Streets Fund'. 

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The Creative Quarter Opportunity

Royal Leamington Spa is a beautiful and affluent spa town in the middle of Warwickshire, located only one hour from London. It offers a unique shopping experience with a fabulous mix of independent retailers and well-known high street names attracting a range of visitors. It also offers an outstanding selection of cafes, bars and restaurants supporting a vibrant economy.

The town is home to one of the strongest video games clusters in the UK creating some of the best known titles in the world. There are a range of games developers, from the internationally acclaimed to the innovative start-up, employing around 2,500 employees in 50+ games companies. In 2015, the industry generated £188m GVA in the District. Much of this activity is based in and around the vicinity of the Creative Quarter development opportunity.

There is also a diverse selection of successful creative individuals and companies attracted by a strong pool of local talent and a lively local creative community. The focus of this has been around the Old Town area, where nationally and internationally acclaimed companies such as Motion House, Heartbreak Productions and The Assembly music venue are based.

The district is a popular location for a variety of different businesses including international companies such as Aston Martin, Jaguar Land Rover, Calor Gas and Aga Rangemaster. There is a strong entrepreneurial spirit and a large selection of independent businesses keen to collaborate with one another to create a thriving business community. The Old Town area is home to, and the focus for, 6,000 students from the world class University of Warwick.

The Creative Quarter offers huge potential to support a thriving creative economy

Where is the Creative Quarter?

CQ Projects

The Creative Quarter is largely based in South Leamington in the area known locally as Old Town. This stretches down from the river to the canal, with Bath Street as the spine. It also includes some of the Town Centre to the north of the river including part of Hamilton Terrace (up to Newbold Street).

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CDP are the Council's development partner. There is a ten-year partnership agreement in place, with an option to extend for a further five years. CDP have experience of delivering complex regeneration projects across England and are most well known for their work in Coventry where they are based. The partnership was agreed following a substantial procurement exercise. The Council and CDP have signed a Collaboration Agreement (10MB, PDF) to set out how the relationship will operate.

The Council will be working together with CDP to deliver the Creative Quarter. Under our agreement with CDP, the partnership has two phases.

In phase one (now completed), CDP prepared a number of documents which were submitted to, and subsequently approved by, the Council.  As well as the plan identifying the boundary of the Creative Quarter, these documents are:

  • Big Picture - This sets an overarching “vision” for the delivery of the Creative Quarter. It was approved by the Council in March 2019.
  • Phase One Report - This contains a high-level technical appraisal of potential uses of Council owned assets. It was approved by the Council in November 2019. The approval of this document brought phase 1 of the partnership to a close.

In phase two, CDP will now focus on the delivery of projects agreed through the “Phase One Report”. This page will be updated when more information is known.

Contact

If you would like to speak to someone at the Council about the Creative Quarter, please contact:

Mark Brightburn
Programme Co-ordinator
Email: mark.brightburn@warwickdc.gov.uk

Creative Quarter website

You can find more current information about the Creative Quarter on the Creative Quarter website.