AS YOU might have seen if you read our review of the year, 2023 was a big year for news in Salisbury.

So as we say goodbye to last year and welcome in 2024, we in the newsroom have been thinking about what we might be able to look forward to next year. 

Here are some of the things we expect to be making the headlines in 2024. 

Salisbury City Hall

Salisbury Journal: Salisbury City Hall. Picture by Spencer MulhollandSalisbury City Hall. Picture by Spencer Mulholland (Image: Spencer Mulholland)

2024 could potentially be a huge year for the future of the City Hall. 

Wiltshire Council has consistently said it remains committed to reopening the venue, despite a repair bill to make the City Hall safe totalling around £2 million.  

The City Hall closed as a vaccine centre earlier this year, and Wiltshire Council has been seeking a third-party provider for the venue. 

While it may not fully reopen fully as an entertainment venue in the next 12 months, its future could be secured and plans laid for getting the doors open to the public once more. 

River Park project

Salisbury Journal:

The River Park scheme is due to be finished by the summer. 

Read more: A round-up of the Salisbury River Park Project 2023

There will be improvement works to the coach park start next year, as well as creating the new pocket park in the central car park.

The new multi-use games area in Fisherton Rec will start to be built along with the play area by Ashley Road. Landscaping works will also start continuing into Spring 2024. 

There will be a grand opening event in the summer. 

Fisherton Gateway project

Salisbury Journal: Fisherton Gateway. Picture by Spencer MulhollandFisherton Gateway. Picture by Spencer Mulholland (Image: Spencer Mulholland)

 The multi-million-pound street enhancement project began in August and is due to be completed 

The money for the project has come from the government's Future High Streets Fund - Salisbury was one of 100 towns shortlisted and in 2021, Wiltshire Council was awarded £9,355,731 for projects in Salisbury.

Wiltshire Council expects the work to completed in summer 2024. 

General election

Salisbury Journal: John Glen at the 2019 General ElectionJohn Glen at the 2019 General Election

Salisbury residents will take to the ballot box in 2024, with some people voting in a new constituency after boundary changes were approved.

The next general election is to be held no later than January 28, 2025, but Prime Minister Rishi Sunak said earlier this month that he intends to hold the election in 2024.

In 2019 John Glen retained the Salisbury seat, with a slightly increased majority.

He took the seat with a majority of 19,736, which was 2,403 more than 2017.

Mr Glen will stand again, as will city councillor Victoria Charleston for the Liberal Democrats, and Arthur Pendragon as an Independent. No other parties have announced who will be representing them.

Novichok public inquiry continues

Salisbury Journal: Dawn SturgessDawn Sturgess

The inquiry into the death of Dawn Sturgess will continue.

Read more: Frustration as 'some material will be kept secret’ in Novichok poisonings inquiry

Ms Sturgess, 44, died after being exposed to the nerve agent Novichok, which had been left in a discarded perfume bottle in Amesbury in July 2018.

Substantive inquiry hearings are due to begin in Salisbury in October next year, more than six years later. 

Planning applications

There will be several planning applications determined next year that could have a big impact on the future of Salisbury. 

The results of the consultation on Wiltshire Council's Local Plan - which includes proposals for  thousands of new homes in and around Salisbury - will be published, and the plan is due to be submitted to the Secretary of State in the "second quarter" of 2024, before a possible adoption of the plan by the end of the year. 

Read more: Homes plan will 'destroy green spaces' and greatly increase traffic, says council

A decision on the plans for an ASDA on London Road was expected on December 22 but has not yet been revealed. 

January could also see a decision made on the latest plans for Old Sarum Airfield, with bosses wanting to build around 315 homes.