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Footfall in Shrewsbury evolves with new park

The Parade Shops’ front car park has been transformed into Evolution Park by the team at Shropshire Festivals. The work has been commissioned by Shrewsbury BID to promote the town being open for business, following the easing of lockdown measures.

The park is themed around the father of evolution, Shrewsbury-born Charles Darwin, and has created an interactive recreational area, located in the town’s shopping district.

The car park has been covered in pedestrian-friendly artificial grass and decked out in socially distanced picnic benches, with lots of fun and educational installations. Youngsters can dig for fossils and create their own creatures, as well as reading the evolution timeline and greeting the Parade’s very own Tyrannosaurus Rex.

The Parade Shops have given up their car park for the new installation, and proprietor Philip Freeman hopes it will encourage families back in to the town centre.

“We are fully behind the work of the BID to celebrate the town’s reopening and encourage footfall on to our streets again. The independent shops here at The Parade desperately need the support of the public to weather the continuous storm 2020 has been so far. We look forward to welcoming the public to the park, and I hope they will take a look around all of our shops while they are here.”

The Evolution Park will be in situ at The Parade Shops, just off St Mary’s Street, until early September.

Beth Heath, of Shropshire Festivals, said their team took time out from their preparations for the first Shropshire Drive-in to install the new park.

“We are used to spending the warmer months creating bespoke kids trails and installations around the county, but of course there has been less demand for that in 2020. We were thrilled to be commissioned to create Evolution Park for the town.

"It is engaging, fun and educational for kids, and the perfect setting for a break during your shopping trip. We love the backdrop of the Parade’s historic building, and combining that history with Darwin’s science and Shrewsbury’s spirit for new growth, we think the result is perfect."

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