From Anne H
Unfortunately, I’ve been unable to go to either of the first two meetings, but I was hoping to go to the next one. Can someone who did go tell me if there was support for any development activity at all? It doesn’t look like it from the reports, and it certainly doesn’t look like it from discussions here. In which case, the title of this group is a misnomer. It should be called Not developing Hebden Bridge, or the Anti-development Group.
Were any constructive suggestions made at all, either about specific developments or about the direction in which Hebden might be developed in future? It is beginning to look like the group’s sole purpose is to demonise “developers”. I’m not sure I could cope with that level of negativity and might have to think twice about coming to the July meeting.
From Nicola M
I'm not sure if you skim read the report, but it is clear that this isn't the name of the group, nor the purpose. There is currently no 'formal' name decided. The group were brought together with no premise other than as concerned residents who want to be fully informed and able to participate and/or comment on, issues which are relevant to the local area and community - be it development, traffic or the general composure/image of the locality.
As a result, at the end of last night's meeting - what was proposed, after some discussion offering alternative suggestions to a number of different current projects in and around the area, was to use the existing (though largely obsolete) Civic Trust to take the existing enthusiasm of those who have been attending these meetings, to a more constructive and structured platform.
The consensus was that they are not opposed to development per se at all, but that where and when development is underway or proposed, that it is sensitive to the needs and nature of the existing environment and its residents. Not a big ask.
From Anne H
Thank you Nicola. With words like enthusism, constructive and structured platform, I think your explanation does sound more positive and forward looking than the impression I had got previously. And the Civic Trust does sound like the name for a group of concerned local people, who want to be more involved.
From Andy M
Good to see that the group is not opposed to development per se - how about supporting development that doesn't try achieve a 'heritage' look?
I've just returned from a short break in a similar sized town near Zurich and what a joy that was. Efficient public transport, a completely pedestrianised town centre with shops, school, nursery and with a mix of old and modern buildings that looked modern; not some faux historical look.
I know we don't have the cash that the Swiss councils obviously have but it was obvious their planners were happy to embrace a range of designs with the overidding themes of public utility and sustainability as a guide.
Food for thought.
Previously, on the Hebweb