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Wellington Orbit

Telford & Wrekin Council building a bright future for Wellington

A picture of the outside entrance of Wellington Orbit to the left of the picture, and to the right of the picture is an inside view of the conference room.

Vision

 

Telford & Wrekin Council resident surveys and local engagement has shown demand for the development of an evening economy and a stronger leisure and cultural offer in Wellington.

The expansion of the existing Orbit cinema and café on Market Square has the potential to create a key focus for this activity alongside the growing food and drink offer.

Capital Regeneration Programme funding from government has enabled the purchase of the bank building by the community enterprise and will enable restoration of the upper floors to create new exhibition, arts and community event space.

The restoration of Wellington Market and Wellington Orbit will create a culture and arts focus in the historic core of the town centre, complimenting and stimulating the growing food and drink offer and providing a point of difference for the town as an alternative destination in Telford.

Download the funding application.

The project

 

This project is supported by the Capital Regeneration Programme, Telford & Wrekin Council, Clifton Community Arts Company Limited.


Clifton Community Arts Centre Ltd is a non-profit organisation and is located at Wellington Orbit building. The building has been partially converted to a café and cinema and is now a valued cultural asset, attracting visitors from within and outside the borough. Currently the first and second floors are empty.

The project will:

  • acquire the entire building to secure the future of the venue as a community asset
     
  • refurbish vacant and dilapidated upper floors
     
  • deliver multi-functional community spaces for exhibitions, performing arts and community outreach services
     
  • attract additional visitors to Wellington, thus supporting local businesses in the town centre
     
  • increase the availability of local services for the community

 

Consultation

 

As a community charity, all activities undertaken at Wellington Orbit are aligned to the needs of the local community. There has been extensive consultation to understand how the upper floors of the building could be utilised to best serve local need.

Key headlines from the consultation:

  • there are no good quality small spaces in the town centre that could be used as offices, either on short term flexible arrangements or short term leases 
     
  • there is demand for consulting/meeting spaces for health, mental health and outreach community support services, in an accessible location, close to public transport amenities 
     
  • there is a lack of small events, gallery, and exhibition space for use by the arts and cultural sector 
     
  • there is insufficient space to accommodate themed film nights at the cinema, where a dining offer can also be provided as the café in isolation is too small 

In addition, over the last twelve months research has been undertaken to establish community need for an arts and community centre at Wellington Orbit. Views have been sought from a range of potential clients.

The detailed findings of this engagement will inform the future designs of the upper floors of the Wellington Orbit building. Engagement with wider stakeholders will also continue throughout project delivery. 

Headline results include: 

  • 98% of respondents supported the creation of a community arts venue in Wellington, demonstrating a strong preference for the creation of new meeting rooms and performance space in the town 
     
  • there is a high level of demand with a wide range of arts based practitioners, performers and organisations expressing firm interest in hosting regular activities and events at Wellington Orbit 
     
  • the proposed uses of the refurbished upper floors present a range of opportunities for community outreach and signposting activities around health and wellbeing, adult education and social inclusion for the local community.

Key milestones

 

Summer / Autumn 2024
Submit planning application and expected planning decision.


Spring 2025
Works start on site (subject to planning approval).


Winter 2025
Completion of refurbishment works (subject to planning approval).


Project team

The project is being managed by the Telford & Wrekin Council Place Programme team.

To contact the team about this project email wellingtonregeneration@telford.gov.uk.


Frequently asked questions

 

The establishment of Wellington Orbit cinema and café on Market Square has the potential to be a key focus and stimulus for this alongside the growing food and drink offer. However, without further investment Wellington Orbit will struggle to develop beyond its first phase.

Together with Wellington Market, the investment will create a significant culture and arts focus in the historic core of the town centre, complimenting and stimulating the growing food and drink offer, both pivotal elements of Wellington’s Regeneration Strategy.

The proposed enhancements to the Market and additional uses at the already popular Orbit building will help to provide a point of difference for the town, diversify the offer and fulfil the role as an alternative destination in Telford.

The project will:

  • deliver multi functional community spaces for exhibitions, performing arts, exhibitions, community outreach services and offices
     
  • attract additional visitors to Wellington, thus supporting local businesses in the town centre
     
  • increase the availability of local services for the community.

We will endeavour to minimise the impact of the works and keep Wellington Orbit open. As we determine the scale of works required, we will be able to provide further details.

We estimate that the construction works will take approximately one year to complete.

There will be no immediate impact on residents and businesses. However, once the proposed development works are underway, there will inevitably be some impact on the operation of Wellington Orbit.

View information about all future public consultations via face to face, online events and surveys

In the meantime, if you would like to find out more information about the Wellington Orbit project, please get in touch:

Email: wellingtonregeneration@telford.gov.uk.

To find out more about activities on offer at Wellington Orbit, please visit the Wellington Orbit website.

A red silhouette of the Telford and Wrekin strapline.