Radstock and Midsomer Norton in focus
Norton Radstock covers the twin towns of Midsomer Norton and Radstock.
The area is located 12 miles South West of Bath and 16 miles South East of Bristol. Norton Radstock is connected to Bath by the A367, a popular tourist route to the West Country, and to Bristol via the A362 and A37, the latter also extending south to the A303.
The area which was formerly part of the Somerset coalfield retains a rich industrial heritage, an engineering skills base and is an important centre for the printing and packaging industry. More recently the growth in the local housing supply has outstripped employment within the area and now over 50% of residents travel out of the area to work.
Employment & The Economy
The population of Norton Radstock is 21,325 and 7,700 people work in the area. Local employment is heavily reliant on the manufacturing sector which accounts for 27.9% of jobs, nearly 2.5 times the national average. In contrast service sector employment at 62% is well below average figures, with office based jobs at 11% less than a third of GB rates. Printing and packaging provides approximately 2,000 jobs, 27% of total employment, which is focussed in a small number of large companies including Mardon Flexible, Communisis BBF, Welton Bibby and Baron, Coates Electrographic and Continu Form Holdings. Norton Radstock has a number of Industrial Estates, the most significant being at Westfield and Old Mills to the south and west of the area which both offer modern accommodation in a range of sizes.
Other major employers include Dickies UK Ltd and Herald Electronics. There is also a cluster of medium size advanced engineering companies.
Midsomer Norton is the main shopping centre for the area and its rural catchment, with nearly three times the number of retail units compared with Radstock which performs a more local service role. Both Town Centres have a good range of community facilities.
There is a good range of shops in Midsomer Norton High Street which enjoys lower than average vacancy rates. The availability of free parking attracts frequent shoppers from the local catchment area. Nearly 800 people are employed in the Town Centre, 380 in retail. The centre contains 130,000 sq ft of offices.
Events & Festivals
A number of annual events take place in the towns including a carnival, part of the Somerset carnival season, a Mardi Gras and a Christmas Celebration. Midsomer Norton hosts a regular monthly Farmers Market whilst the Radstock Museum, dedicated to the area's industrial heritage, holds regular events and exhibitions.
Looking forward to 2011 Norton Radstock is likely to suffer an element of economic re-structuring as the national decline in manufacturing employment continues. To counter this and to enable new jobs to be created in the area significant sites at Old Mills, St Peter's Park and Welton Hollow will need to be brought forward. In Midsomer Norton Town Centre the quality of the retail offer could be strengthened through the promotion of a mixed use scheme containing offices and housing at the Streamside.
An opportunity to discuss the future development of the town centre has been arranged for Saturday 19 June 2010
The exhibition is intended to offer people the chance to feed into the draft proposals for the Midsomer Norton town centre that will guide and promote development over the next 20 years as part of the new Core Strategy.
These draft proposals, which have been developed by Bath & North East Somerset Council in partnership with the Midsomer Norton Forum, aim to create new job opportunities by providing new, modern office accommodation and a more vibrant High Street that attracts more national high street stores.
Your place, your say…. How to get involved
Bath & North East Somerset Council would like to encourage residents, visitors and the business community to take this opportunity to get involved in the future of Midsomer Norton town centre.
The exhibition will take place at the Midsomer Norton Town Hall on Saturday 19 June between 09:30 – 15:00 where representatives from the Council and Midsomer Norton Forum will be on hand to discuss proposals and answer questions. The exhibition will continue at the Midsomer Norton Library from 21 June until 2 July.
For further information email or visit:
In Radstock the regeneration of 18 acres of derelict railway land by Norton Radstock Regeneration Company will strengthen the heart for the town along with housing, business space and new community facilities. For more information visit the Key Projects page.
- DOWNLOAD - Economic Profile Midsomer Norton Radstock (925k)
Providing an economic overview of Midsomer Norton & Radstock including the population, labour market, travel to work, housing and education