Historic red-light district in Bangkok to be remodelled in the style of England's bucolic Cotswolds

A Bangkok red light district is set to be remodelled - in the style of the unspoiled region of England known as the Cotswolds. The Rattanakosin Island area of the Thai capital has been used by prostitutes for decades. Women in the area cater to local Thai men rather than flashy gogo dancers seeking wealthy foreigners in the country’s tourist hotspots. But Thai military chief Prayut Chan-o-cha now wants to clean up the ancient district where the city of Bangkok first developed in the 1700s. The military leader reportedly said his ‘’dream’’ is to see the red-light area plagued with homelessness and poverty become ‘’an important tourist attraction reminiscent of England's Cotswolds.’’ The area is surrounded circled by Oxford, Bath and Stratford-upon-Avon. According to the Bangkok Post, the PM is said to have been inspired by Bourton-on-the-Water located among the area's rolling hills and known as "the Little Venice of the Cotswolds." In Bangkok, the historic red-light district has several canals that bear a passing similarity to the idyllic village. However, Thailand's street food sellers and scruffy scrap metal hawkers might raise eyebrows in the English countryside. The government’s Defence Ministry permanent secretary Gen Nat Intarachareon told the Bangkok Post he will proceed with the plan to regenerate the area in the image of the Cotswolds. He said: ''Yellow star flowers will be cultivated along the canals. Old buildings will be renovated and repainted in soft yellow.'' The military dictator first ordered the prostitution-plagued area to be cleaned up in February, with volunteers dredging the filthy canals and solar-powered floating water cleaners being installed. Bangkok Metropolitan Authority officials led by Phaitoon Khamparat inspected the area and found it was not appropriate to have prostitution there ‘’damaging the image of Thailand.’’ Mr Khamparat told local media that women should be encouraged to pursue alternative sources of income. He said: ‘’The second part of the plan is to re-adjust this area and landscape so it is not suitable for prostitution. By making the area clean with more electric lights, we can add CCTV to monitor the offenders. ‘’Thirdly, new public activities should be introduced to the area to encourage tourism.’’