BUSINESSES could be moving into the city’s newly refurbished railway arches as early as next year.

Several of Worcester’s historic railway arches have been renovated and re-opened as part of a multi-million-pound scheme.

Worcester City Council said four of the arches should be ready for businesses to move in from the early New Year.

The project, which was backed by more than £3 million from the government’s Cultural Development Fund, has seen a number of railway arches between Foregate Street, the Hive and the River Severn converted into studios fit for creative businesses in a bid to create a new cultural quarter for the city.

Worcester City Council, in partnership with the University of Worcester, Severn Arts and Worcestershire County Council, said it is now also looking for an agency to market and manage the studios for potential tenants.

Under the terms of the £3 million government fund, the refurbished studios must be let for creative and artistic purposes only including design, media and performing arts.

Cllr Adrian Gregson, chair of the Arches Worcester steering group, said: “We are really excited to see the refurbishment of the first four Arches near completion.

“We expect interest in occupying these brand new studios to be high.

“We are now seeking new partners to help market and manage the tenancies to creative and artistic professionals.

“We look forward to welcoming the first tenants to the Arches Worcester in early 2022.”

The council said interest from individuals willing to share a studio or from groups wishing to share a space will be welcomed – in addition to those interested in moving into a whole studio.

A number of arches in the area have already been occupied by independent businesses including Method Coffee, the Burger Shop, Maneki Ramen, Sangers Deli and Axe Junkies.

The funding has also been used to create a new gateway foot and cycle path linking the arches, Worcester Foregate Street, the Hive and the River Severn.

The deadline for applications for the potential marketers and managers of the new arches is 5pm on Monday, November 29.

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