Creative idea for Riverside

editorial image

A “creative hub” for art students could be created in Leighton’s town centre - but there’s still confusion over responsibility of the building.

Central Beds College is looking to use the empty Riverside Centre on Bridge Street for arts and crafts studios, a cafe gallery, a kiln and a media suite to be used by an estimated 150 students per year.

Representatives of the college attended Leighton-Linslade Town Council’s partnership committee to plea their case for the facility, which would also be hired out by schools, groups, organisations or artists .

The college claims there are no similar facilities nearby, and research suggests there is a demand for the plans. It follows the news that courses were pulled from the college’s out-of-town base at Grovebury Road because young people were reluctant to walk there.

Councillors expressed their support, describing the potential as being a “flagship venture and significant benefit to the local community” but highlighted concern over lack of parking.

A building surveyor suggested improvements to the ground and first floors to provide flexible space to maximise the building.

The committee agreed more details were required as ownership, building maintenance and responsibilty was unclear. A meeting will be held next month to discuss further.