Paving protest

PUBLISHED: 11:16 20 August 2009 | UPDATED: 14:22 06 May 2010

SIR - The summer time is sometimes referred to in political circles as the silly season and it seems to me some locally are taking this to the nth degree ! Your report on the growing number of patchwork pavements within the St Albans conservation a

SIR - The summer time is sometimes referred to in political circles as the 'silly season' and it seems to me some locally are taking this 'to the nth degree'!

Your report on the growing number of patchwork pavements within the St Albans conservation area, however, was far from comical (Herts Advertiser, August 6).

It was a shame therefore that the two very 'po-faced' politicians pictured could not have used the time more usefully in insisting that the district councils draft streetscape manual "a document primarily intended to guide the work of officers and contractors who are responsible for the design, maintenance and management of the streets and public spaces"; packed a bit more punch than its current aspirational objectives.

After all, this document should become policy within our Local Development Framework. Not before time too, as our conservation area is currently on English Heritage's 'at risk' register, due in no small measure to the lack of such a manual.

The document states "Footway resurfacing works often generate discussion between the District and County Council's as to the most appropriate material to use. This sometimes leads to a delay in getting works completed as each site is discussed at length prior to works commencing. To ensure that these materials are agreed it is suggested that Herts Highways and SADC should identify a hierarchy of streets and spaces in order to prioritise the use of more expensive, natural materials."

So why not help work out, instead of posing for photos, the hierarchy of streets as a matter of urgency before Herts Highways and the languor of our district council wreak more havoc in our streets, in particular within the 'at risk' conservation areas?

The draft manual, and I am sure fellow readers will not be surprised to know, is out for consultation, but not for us mere residents, only a select list of groups. I just wonder sometimes what this council has against consulting all within the district on a level playing field.

Do ask the council for a copy - hopefully they won't charge you £50 as for the current LDF consultation - and make your views known to your local councillors and of course Councillors Brazier, Ellis and Teare under whose portfolios this confusingly is being produced.

If the photogenic councillors, who found the patchwork paving rightly so unappealing, could not only assist as suggested above, but also prod Councillor Ellis to write that blasted letter to the county council, regarding the design-error paving in St Peter's Street, which adds to that mess, it would make me a very happy bunny indeed.

VANESSA GREGORY

Tennyson Road

St Albans

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