Newmarket retailers are asking residents for their views on a £2 million art project that will bring the town’s racing heritage to the High Street.
The Newmarket Equine Design Project (NED) is the brainchild of Richard Goss, who said he wanted to make the High Street unique in a bid to help local business by bringing in more visitors.
His idea would feature three high quality sculptures of full size racehorses in various stages of a race down the street, starting with the start at the clock tower, full gallop in the mid point of the street and the finish close to the post office.
Retailers felt that although horse racing was a major source of tourist revenue, there were no visual links between the sport and their domain in the High Street.
The NED concept will be controversial as it includes removing the existing parking and loading bays on the southern side of the High Street so the pavement can be widened allowing space for the installations and improving pedestrian facilities.
Retailers’ association member Julie Eden said: “We want this to be Newmarket’s equivalent of the Angel of the North, a racecourse running down the High Street.
The development team has already secured a project manager to help out with the statutory consents required with the project aiming to have it complete by next spring .
“If we have this in Newmarket it will be a focal point for the town. It is our aim to put Newmarket firmly on the map,” said Mrs Eden.
As for the funding of the project the retailers have already had already had promises of donations and would be exploring further avenues of funding including the National Lottery.
But they want to know what the public think of the project and Journal readers are being asked to answer the question on the coupon and return it to the Journal office which will pass on all responses to the retailers’ group.