Memorandum by V Kendrick (NT 17)
"Town's original design"large
housing estates in district pockets of cul-de-sacs (closes), providing
house drives or parking provision nearby to keep roads clear of
majority of homes have two cars plus;
out of town centre shopping x 3 equals
need of a car!
Much in-migration/commuter town, local industry
becoming more warehouse type equals less local employees/semi
many industrial units empty;
speculative office building on the
business parks/carbuncle developments
by other District Councils and millionaire farmers, attached to
Redditch Borough boundaryspeculative, incomplete and problematic
(eg flooding), creating Urban Sprawl!
marketable house building to excess;
huge B&Q Warehouse on brownfield
contaminated Alcad site in residential area equals part time,
low paid, semi knowledgeable workforce/probable closure of local
DIY outlets, 100's of HGV's equals Location Peripheral Zone.
Building of new affordable dwellings very slow
in number some specialist builds eg
bungalows for elderly, releasing
disabled and drop-in centres.
Home Zones, good quality bus services coupled
with "safe walking routes to school" currently in progress,
could reduce some car use eg back to one-car families
many "design" parts of
districts/estates lend themselves to Home Zones equals funding
needed to improve street scene equals street furniture, lighting,
pedestrianised spacing with cars tucked in if drives not possible,
blocks of garages removed (are an eye-sore and prone to vandalism/loitering
of youths etc);
the space, with appropriate low level
landscaping, will add to much needed improvement.
For a sustainable town, residential improvement
as well as diverse economic development/employment, with skill
apprenticeships need to be the focus.
Redditch is no longer a New Town! Building has
been in progress everywhere for the past 27 years! The town needs
and deserves a break! With its Borough size population, time to
settle and mature, using local resources
improvements to local shopping centres;
community and medical expansion;
retention and better management of
urban open green spaces plus the creation of more;
appropriate and professional management
of nature reserves, woods, public rights of way etc.
"Balance between new development and regeneration
of older parts of town"
town centre Kingfisher Shopping Arcades
undergoing cosmetic improvements with more retail flooring;
many retail units empty.
Redditch does not need to compare or compete
with Merry Hill!
English Partnerships of the town centre "bombed
sites" have not produced the "vision" of residents,
which was an open area with small retail units including non-alcoholic
refreshment bars, open street scene with landscaping and no mugging
alleys. They gave the town big buildings either side of a mugging
alley opposite the town hall, half the units of which remain unoccupied!
The strangle-hold English Partnerships still
have on compulsory purchased land is not sustaining Redditch,
quite the opposite! That on the fringe/boundary is likely to become
"built" environments and add to urban sprawl, whereas
"living" environments are badly needed eg the north
east of Redditch is densely residential/industrial due to being
adjacent to the A435 with NO parks, nature reserves, outdoor educational
centres etc. In other words no provision for a good, healthy quality
of life. Other nuggets of land still held by EP within the boundary
are needed as urban open green spaces for Redditch residents.
Local "ness" provision has not been considered or funded.
I Z LeisureBingo hall moved to EP bombed
site, Alcester Street, town centre;
old bingo hall to be a nightclub!;
a seedy wine bar (Yates);
a pub already exists just a little
only cinema closed, becoming a Rock
Café theme centre;
Linton Tree nightclub with dance
All the above are in the Inner Zone (town centre)
which is a Conservation Area complete with listed buildings. Land
next to theatre (LB) sold by RBC to retail speculators! No takers!
land (brownfield) next to theatre
could be a cultural venue;
citizens would like there to be a
performing arts centre, art gallery, tasteful eatery, puppet theatre,
film studio etc;
there are many small cultural specialised
groups in Redditch, but no central venue.
Railway station area derelict
no plans unveiled for development,
youth want a leisure venue and here is, by the newly replaced
bus station, a railway station needing improvement, multi-storey
car parks under used and taxi termini.
Why are developers/builders allowed to dictate
what they want eg a quick fix, anything shed like, no architectural
style with no consultative say by local residents/other stakeholders?
All ages would like a multi-screen cinema and an ice-rink.
P ZAbbey Stadium development scuppered:
loss of hoped for "a competitive"
size swimming pool and L T Association's location to Redditch
with more tennis courts.
Recreationall "high" schools
have a variety of facilities, some middle schools have less, lower
schools own use mostly;
County Council asset stripping with
school closures and grounds and fire station land being sold for
So much for regeneration and neighbourhood renewal.
The Future of Redditch is unique in its own right.
Note: IZ = Inner Zone; PZ = Peripheral Zone.