Evesham certainly has a lot going for it at the moment. The town’s festivals and regattas are building up excellent reputations for entertainment and sport.
And the Wiper family are doing a brilliant job of refurbishing the Regal Cinema. I was taken around it a few weeks ago by Laurence Wiper who showed me how much progress has been made – full reopening is due around the end of the year.

The whole community has pulled together to help the Wiper family to restore the cinema back to its original glory. I was inspired by all of the work that has been done by volunteers, from polishing windows and refurbishing thermostats to building doors and restoring window frames. It is so much more than ‘just’ a cinema.

Then there’s the education scene locally. Recently I met the new Executive Head of Evesham High School and Simon De Montfort Middle School and was extremely impressed by the new federation. The schools have formed an excellent partnership and the pupils are flourishing.

Finally, there’s the urgent need to rebuild the Abbey Bridge and Viaduct. I know the construction phase is going to be very difficult – it’s not an easy site and real traffic disruption is inevitable. But on the other hand, I’ve had very encouraging discussions with the County Council who are doing a great job of making the case to government to allocate funding for the scheme.

If the bridge and viaduct were not rebuilt, the long term consequences for the town would be very serious indeed. Yes, we will need to agree locally how to cope with the turmoil during the work, but getting the rebuilding done is essential, and I am confident we will succeed if we all pull together.

So all in all it looks like a very encouraging time for Evesham.


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