Article from Action Forum - September 1976

Planning permission has now been granted for the  Rainham District Shopping Centre to be built on  Council-owned land north of the High Street and  west of Station Road. The developers are to be  G.E. Wallis & Sons, and the architects for the scheme  are Richard Sheppard, Robson and Partners.  The intention is to provide a quiet pedestrian  shopping area, the design of which will complement  the small-scale and informal character of the existing village centre. The shops will be reached on foot from both the High Street and Station Road, as well  as from a new car park to be provided at the rear.  Vehicles will gain access to the Centre by a new road  linking Holding Street and Longley Road. In all, the  scheme provides for 31 shops and some offices at  first-floor level. New public conveniences are also  included in the scheme.  The scheme represents the culmination of many years spent in planning and negotiating and should  help to revitalise the village core and re-establish it as a centre of social and economic activity. It is hoped  to start building in the late autumn and it is currently anticipated that the first shops will open  in a little over a year after the commencement of  works. The centre as a whole should be open within  two years of commencement.  Plans of the centre have been on display in  Rainham Library for some months and can still be seen there or at the Department of Architecture and  Planning at the Municipal Buildings.  

Editorial about the new Rainham Shopping Centre development plans September 1976

Rainham is to have a new look! This may seem a  familiar cry to many of the native residents but we  are pleased to be able to publish an artistic plan in  our centre pages. The plan shows how the site  between Station Road, Longley Road and the High  Street will look (optimistically) in two years time,  and anyway quite soon. It will be a sad moment  when the old Church School, now the home of  Rainham and Wigmore Community Association, is  finally demolished. I am sure it will be a time of  nostalgia to all but the very newest inhabitants of  Rainham. However a new shopping centre must give more life to a village that really hadn’t quite grown  to a town despite its 40,000 residents.  

Update - November 1978

In the Action Forum from November 1978 it states that the Longley Road car park is virtually completed and will be ready in time for Christmas and be available as a free car park for Christmas shoppers. It also mentions that the shopping centre is "shooting up" and that Savacentre has opened in Hempstead Valley.

Rainham Kent Shopping Centre Plans 1970s (AF 1976)

Rainham Shopping Centre Development Plans Opening 1970s (AF 1976)



Articles about Rainham History