A Carlisle war memorial is set to be relocated as part of plans to regenerate the city centre.
Cumberland Council began ground investigation work this week to transform Market Square and Greenmarket.
It said it had engaged in consultations with the British Legion and has reached an agreement to relocate the memorial and its benches to a more prominent space in the market square.
It is hoped the revamp will transform the city centre into a ‘vibrant focal point’ that encourages footfall and community gatherings.
The council added that the area is currently dominated by cars and can look ‘unwelcoming’ but that the revamp will be a chance to enhance its potential and optimise the space.
Some trees affected by Ash Dieback will be removed from the area for safety reasons before the bird nesting season. A further two trees will also be removed.
New trees and shrubs will be planted in the area as a result.
The council has also clarified that not every tree marked with orange paint will undergo removal and that all trees were accidentally marked with spray paint during survey works.
Leader of Cumberland Council, councillor Mark Fryer, said: “The investment in Carlisle city centre is testament to Cumberland Council’s commitment to the city’s growth and development. The Market Square and Greenmarket project will allow residents and visitors to look forward to an energetic and inviting space.
“Presently, the area poses challenges with numerous cars congesting the space, resulting in potential hazards, it can feel like a real-life dodgem track!
“Recognising the need for change, we envisage a revitalised space that caters to the needs and aspirations of all Cumberland residents, businesses, and visitors who frequent the city centre.
“By prioritising easy and safe access to the area, we are dedicated to promoting positive outcomes for the health and well-being of our entire community, while attracting more footfall and boosting economic activity.”
Over £100 million of public funding is being invested into the city centre through nearby regeneration projects on Devonshire Street and English Street, Carlisle Station, and the University of Cumbria’s new Citadels Campus.
Market Square and Greenmarket will receive £4 million from the Future High Street Fund.
The council will also be conducting a comprehensive review of all trees in the city centre due to ash dieback, prioritising safety.
It added that ‘appropriate action’ will be taken for individual trees as deemed necessary.