Letters, December 9, 2010, part four
SIR – Wouldn’t it be nice if this planning process was seen to be true and fair?
We’ve had the Amateur Swimming Association’s advice on pool lengths misrepresented; we’ve had an Active People Survey that omits the family swimmers of St Albans; we’ve had public exhibition display boards which gave three display boards to one proposal and only one display board to a second.
Don’t you agree that these planning problems have done little for the credit of St Albans? What can be done to ensure that this project goes ahead in a style with which we can all be proud?
Please can we (the people of St Albans) make sure the planning process reflects the best planning for St Albans?
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End of the line
SIR – It was disappointing to read (Herts Advertiser, December 2) that Arriva had not been able to reverse the cessation of the 712 route beyond their original deadline.
I felt that Matt Jackson-Hale and his colleagues had put together some excellent reasoning together with costing and projected usage which might have proved to Arriva that the route could have become economically viable.
I rather suspect that Arriva, having made a decision, were never going to reverse it no matter how persuasive the arguments against such actions were, but they probably felt that going through the motions of listening sympathetically was good PR.
As they control the purse strings they will always call the tune but I do feel that there is a very good case for them to divert one of their three-an-hour 757 services via Harpenden and St Albans.
I wonder what occupancy this service enjoys on its through the night journeys. Is it as good as Mr Jackson-Hale’s projection for the 712 route?
Call for enquiry
SIR – I am writing to support the demand (Herts Advertiser, November 18) for a full enquiry into how a property developer with no local interest or loyalty could come here, make a lucrative deal with the Woodland Trust, demolish the iconic Hill End Farm, and replace it with a blot on the landscape.
Meanwhile, why do we even need a forest car park at this stage? It will be years before the current and productive farmland is covered with anything worth visiting. As to more walks needed, try www.singlefile.uku.co.uk
Fairmead Avenue, Harpenden
Bricket Wood disgrace
SIR – Upon reading about the continuing huge cost of still maintaining the late-lamented Bricket Wood sports centre, I can’t say this came as a great surprise as I, and I am sure a lot of other people who used to use this facility, were aware of this already.
What an absolute disgrace, this centre could still have been in use and at least would have bought in some revenue, and helped existing members to make the gradual transition to another sports centre when the lease was finally up.
Wouldn’t it have been nice for once for the council to have carried a small loss until the very end, thus giving a public service to the faithful members who so miss this centre?
To say that an arrangement was made with Woodside is all well and good, and this is indeed a lovely facility, if you can get to it before it closes, as the traffic is just horrendous no matter what time of day you try to get there.
How about the council biting the bullet and re-opening it until the time that the lease runs out?
Park Street, St Albans
Scheme would benefit school
SIR – We are writing in response to your article entitled ‘Homes on school sites plan may be scrapped’ (December 2).
Whilst it is up to others to comment on whether or not future housebuilding might lead to a loss of school land at Beaumont and Nicholas Breakspear, this is decidedly NOT the case with St Albans Girls School.
In a reversal of traditional business models, land adjacent to St Albans Girls School will be given to the school to allow the building of four new tennis courts. This will then allow two much older tennis courts on the STAGS’ site to be used as the footprint for a new sixth form centre. Net result: STAGS gains two tennis courts, a new sixth form centre and an increase in land.
We trust that you will be able to ensure that in any future articles regarding STAGS and housing, you will be able to make it clear to your readers that not only will no school land be lost to housing but also that the proposed development will allow the school site to expand.
Holywell Hill, St Albans