THE decision to relocate Salisbury’s information centre has now been completely reversed, and the council leader has announced it will not be moved during his administration.

More than 6,000 people signed a petition against the controversial move, which would have seen tourist services moved to the front of the Guildhall rather than its current position in Fish Row.

One of the co-ordinators of the campaign, Mary Webb, said: “We have won.

“Democracy is the winner today, never be afraid to fight for what you believe in.”

After public backlash the city council originally said the decision would be reviewed next spring, but have now committed to keeping the service open in its current location throughout this council’s lifetime.

Leader Matthew Dean said: “We have listened to everybody. There has been a clear view from the [council tax] precept payers that people want to keep a manned service at the Guildhall.”

There will still be an element of change, as staff currently working at Shopmobility in the Maltings (the originally proposed site for the new service) will join with information centre staff to create one team, and staff will work across a number of different locations.

But Cllr Dean said the information centre will remain open in its current form, including keeping retail and customer facing staff at the site.

“It is going to look and feel like a tourist information centre,” he added. “That’s what it is going to be.”

And he said the council was not looking to cut the number of hours the centre is open, but may tweak these to keep it open longer at times when there is more demand, such as during the summer months.

Changes to the proposed management structure will also be put in place, which will make savings of about £45,000, compared to £60,000 in the original proposals.

Proposed work to the Shopmobility unit will continue as planned, and Cllr Dean said it was a “necessary investment” to the service, which would benefit its existing users.

Ms Webb added: “We wish to work with the council to ensure the information centre provides a comprehensive service for both local people and visitors, with better marketing of the facilities and improved sign posting.

“We’d like to say a massive thank you to everyone who signed the petition and supported us through this campaign.”