A VISION of how two of Barry’s main shopping districts should appear has been approved by Vale Council cabinet members.

Council leaders this week recommended adopting a framework for the Vale’s four centres – Barry, Penarth, Llantwit Major and Cowbridge with a progress report expected within a year.

Consultants Nathaniel Litchfield and Partners (NLP) developed the framework which included Holton Road, Broad Street and High Street areas in Barry.

The report described Barry as a "a diverse town centre which supports business start-up and embraces new opportunities such as Barry Waterfront" with this vision achieved by encouraging clear linkages between surrounding areas including Barry Waterfront and Barry Docks Railway Station.

It also suggested a Whole Building Strategy - dealing with vacancy rates, bringing empty buildings into use coupled with a pragmatic approach to focusing commercial activity around a commercial core.

Other ideas included encouraging a better mix of uses and new reasons to visit Holton Road, improving shop fronts and building fabric as well as revitalising Holton Road's image by marketing and advertising it as a vital and viable centre which supports business start-ups.

The report said Broad and High streets in Barry were a “coherent and functional centre” with “High Street being Barry's independent cluster and Broad Street being the gateway, providing an attractive and safe evening destination".

It said the vision could be achieved by making Broad Street a more enticing place to stop and more attractive entrance into the centre, increasing awareness of the centre - High Street as Barry's independent cluster and Broad Street as an attractive night time destination, and encouraging a more diverse family-orientated night-time economy, not just based on drinking, in Broad Street.