Gravesham Borough Council Regulatory Board resolves to give Heritage Quarter Scheme planning permission (posted 01/05/13)
At a meeting last night (30/04/13) GBC's Regulatory Board resolved to grant planning permission to the Edinburgh House Heritage Quarter proposals. It was, however, a controversial decision- three Councillors voted for it, three against, and three abstained, thus leaving the casting vote to the Chair, Councillor Jane Cribbon- hardly a ringing endorsement. This permission is subject to notification to the Government, and to agreeing financial contributions for health, highways and other matters.
The meeting was a farce- hundreds of people, the vast majority against the scheme, turned up to attend and observe (as is their right) democracy in action. They were denied access to the Council Chamber where the meeting was taking place, and had to make do instead with a televised link to the Woodville Halls. The meeting was delayed when the television link went down and eventually ended at 10:45pm- by which time many concerned citizens, who stand to have thier flats thrown into darkness by the scheme, had had enough of this particular brand of local democacy, and had gone home.
Watch this space- Urban Gravsham will continue its fight on behalf of the riverside residents whose lives will be blighted by the scheme and on behalf of 1000's of Gravesham residents. There were many aspects of the meeting which were odd and unsaisfactory which we will investigate fully and there are various ways in which our fight against this development can be continued.
Please support us by joining us or by making a financial contribution to our funds- only together can we defeat this scheme.
To read more
The Dossier: True Horror of Heritage Quarter Proposals outlined in report to Council. (posted 20/03/13)
Urban Gravesham has delivered its objection on the Heritage Quarter proposals in a detailed, closely argued and authoritative 'Dossier' to Gravesham Borough Councillors. The dossier reveals that the proposals will completely overwhelm the Heritage Quarter, blocking out daylight for existing residents and businesses and destroying the historic character of the area.
The dossier reveals that the proposed flats fail modern space standards and will be small and cramped. It argues that the development may well become the slums of tomorrow and suggests that 'Poky-Hontas Court' would be an appropriate name for the Eastern Quarter of the development.
By concentrating large new shops (including a large Tesco store) at the extreme western edge of the town centre, the scheme may well be good for the owners of the St Georges Centre but it will not regenerate or help the central and eastern parts of the town centre. In this context, claims over job creation are exaggerated. The best way of securing a prosperous and desirable future for Gravesend is to nurture what is unique about it- its historic character and riverside location. To develop the town centre in the same way as Dartford or Chatham is not a good regeneration strategy.
'Overall, the scheme is an old fashioned, out-of-date ‘any-where-ville’ regeneration scheme that fails to grasp present day challenges of changing retail trends and changes in the housing market. It is a ruthless exercise in packing as much cheap development onto the sites as possible. In any context the scheme would be pedestrian and disappointing, but in this context it is outrageous in its clumsy disregard for the
precious townscape that it will so seriously damage and for the interests of the local community who will have to live with it.'
To download Urban Gravesham's Letter of Objection, click here
Urban Gravesham AGM- residents and businesses unite to condemn Heritage Quarter Scheme
Urban Gravesham's recent AGM (28/01/13) was very well attended. The meeting included several local business people and representives of residents' associations. All those present voted unanimously that the Edinburgh House proposals were unacceptable. They pledged to continue to seek to persuade councillors that Gravesend could do better than an out-of-date plan which offers very little future for the town except the creation of large blocks of poky flats which might swiftly become slums. To read more click here.
Its official- Heritage Quarter scheme not good enough (posted 01/02/13)
Urban Gravesham have recently seen an official report by the South East Regional Design Panel on the Heritage Quarter Scheme. This body of design experts were employed by Gravesham Council to give completely indpendant, without prejudice, design advice. Unfortunately for the developers Edinburgh House the report was far from glowing. To read more click here.
New Heritage Quarter planning application (reference 120931) (posted 30/12/12)
Urban Gravesham - the Civic Society for Gravesend and Northfleet
We are an ordinary group of citizens who care about the character and environment of the urban areas of Gravesham.
We aim to support positive changes to the town centre but we will, where necessary, campaign against changes that we think would damage the character of area.
We have been involved in major campaigns to save the Heritage Quarter (round St Georges Church and the Market Square) and the Transport Quarter (round the Railway Station) from mass development.
or phone 01474 566701
Membership is £5 per year.
Download the membership form and return it with your membership fee to the address shown.
Continue supporting us!
To be a strong group which everyone listens to we need as many members as possible. We also need funds to continue our campaigns to preserve Gravesend from overdevelopment. If you think we are doing a good job then send a cheque to 'Urban Gravesham' at the address on the form above
Download January 2013 Heritage Quarter Bulletin
Download January 2013 Newsletter (lots of news on Transport Quarter, Rosherville Gardens and other matters)