Plans set to add spice to Bradford

Yorkshire town will be the location for a visitor attraction celebrating the history and importance of spices

Spice, Bradford’s answer to the Eden Project, is closer to fruition. Described as “something to pepper up what Bradford has to offer tourists”, recent plans include greenhouses and research links to Far Eastern botanical gardens. London-based planner Alsop Architects has drawn up a 15-year masterplan that includes green spaces. Bradford Urban Regeneration Company, set up by regional development agency Yorkshire Forward and Bradford council, appointed Alsop. Spice will be built on the site of the Bradford’s Odeon cinema. Some of the spices in the garden will grow under Eden-style glass domes to recreate the atmosphere of tropical islands. Eden director Tony Kendle told The Guardian: “We get asked to support a lot of ideas and we can’t. But there’s something about this one that drew me. It’s a very exciting idea in an appropriate place.” Project director Jan Smithies added: “It will essentially be a visitor attraction, but one with a very strong commercial and retail base.” She has held talks with the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew and the Royal Horticultural Society on preserving spices and on educational programmes. Project leaders are looking for funding and hope to open to coincide with the 2008 Olympics. Planners promise spices and herbs expanding across public spaces, living herbs in parks and gardens, car parks, roundabouts and play areas.

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