Wednesday, 29 February 2012

MHDC Planning Officer recommends approval for Tenbury Tesco.

This is the Summary to the report that the MHDC Cllrs who make up the Northern Area Planning Committee will be discussing next week.

This is a full planning application for a retail food store with a gross internal floor space of 2,310 square metres, of which 1,384 square metres would be the net tradable area, on the former Cattle Market Site, Teme Street, Tenbury Wells.

The application also includes car parking, improvements to the access to the site, the widening of the Riverside Walk and provision of seating and an area of public open space.

Separate vehicular and pedestrian access is proposed from Teme Street.

The main issues in the consideration of the application are whether the principle of a food store on this site is acceptable, having regard to national and local planning policies relating to retail development and flood risk; the effect of the proposal on highway safety; the impact of the development on the vitality and viability of Tenbury as a town centre; the effect of the development on the character of the area and the Tenbury Wells Conservation Area; the effect upon residential amenities, the effect on biodiversity and protected species, given that the River Teme, adjoining the site is a Site of Special Scientific Interest and overall, whether the proposal is in accordance with the Development Plan.

The application is reported to Committee at the request of the two District Councillors for Tenbury Wells and given the significant level of local interest in the proposal.

The recommendation is that planning permission be granted subject to the applicant entering into a Section 106 and Section 278 legal agreements in respect of a financial contribution being paid towards community transport, the delivery of public realm works within the vicinity of the application site, the payment of a commuted sum for the maintenance of the Riverside Walk, improvements to the A4112/A456 junction and a financial contribution being paid for the monitoring of the Travel Plan, with payment made if the objectives are not achieved.

The full report can be viewed here. 

Sunday, 26 February 2012

Tenbury Bridge Work 7 Down, 3 to Go

The upstream railings have now been revealed, but as many have pointed out are already showing dirt stains.  It seems that a forensic paint analysis showed the bridge has always been painted a shade of white, and so English Heritage insisted this should continue.

The work is still on schedule and WCC have issued another update.
The downstream railing are now getting the grit blast and repaint treatment and I guess this will be finished in the next few days.

This leaves just the waterproofing of the concrete extensions, the replacement of the curb stones, the resurfacing of the pavements & carriageway.

Who knows, with luck & good weather the bridge might even be opened earlier than the target date of March 16th.

Sunday, 19 February 2012

Tenbury Bridge Work 6 Down, 4 to Go

There seems to be little visable progress this week except for work on the railings, which are slowly reappearing coated with the English Heritage prescribed white colour. 

Hopefully progress will now be swift, and the road bed replaced so that Tenbury can get back on track, with the bridge opening by March 16th.

Plan won't pose additional flood threat.

A letter in this weeks Tenbury Advertiser illustrates why protesters should really try to get their facts correct.

The letter claims that the proposed development will make flooding more likely, when in fact the opposite is true.  The land in question has a clay sub soil, so the existing run off is incredibly fast (almost that of hard landscaping) but if the land is developed, the developer will be required to implement SUDS.  These are measures designed to slow any run off & to stop flooding.  So the risk will be much reduced.

The letter claims that all Tenbury is in a flood zone.  This is incorrect as the EA map shows.

The letter claims that there are no jobs in Tenbury.  Again untrue, we could do with more, but several employers in Burford are expanding and will require more staff.

The letter says that there are many houses for sale including 12 in Orchard Court, but of course there are age restrictions on who can buy in Orchard Court.  There is actually quite a waiting list for Orchard Court, but the older people wishing to move there are "trapped" in their old houses as the housing market has stalled.  This is  due to the lack of suitable and affordable housing at the bottom end of the market.  The very sector that this development is likely to address.

Whether this site is suitable for housing or a desirable development for Tenbury is another matter entirely, but the objections in this letter really don't "hold much water".

Wednesday, 15 February 2012

Tenbury Regal Open Days

The Regal in Tenbury Wells is inviting interested visitors to see the progress of the Heritage Lottery Funded restoration work at the cinema first-hand in early March. Tickets for these free short tours of the site are now available and guests will be able to see the work already completed as well as learn about what is still to be done.
Tours are expected to last for about half an hour, and will be led by volunteer guides. Visitors will see the progress in the main auditorium as well as in the foyer.

"We had a fantastic response to our Open Day before the construction work started" says Sarah Fellows, Regal Heritage Access Officer. "We're expecting these behind-the-scenes days to be just as popular, so we're advising people to book early to avoid disappointment as places are very limited."

The behind the scenes visits are running on Friday 2nd March and Saturday 3rd March.

Tickets are available now from Sarah Fellows by email on, by phone on 07980 692302 or in person from the Pump Rooms in Tenbury Wells. 

People wishing to volunteer as guides for the event should get in touch by the same means.

Saturday, 11 February 2012

Tenbury Bridge Work 5 Down, 5 to Go

Well, we are half way through the Tenbury Teme Bridge refurbishment.  There is less visible progress this week but the strong smell of solvents coming from the tenting probably means that things are happening out of view.
Many of the damaged blocks under the arches have now been replaced, and I can confirm that there are definitely large salmon in the Teme. (Either that or I sniffed too much solvent)  A large fish broke water under the arch just after I took the photo.  It had gone before I could take another!

Harriett Baldwin MP &  County Cllr Ken Pollock were visiting shopkeepers today to discuss the project.

First Windfall Draw Prize Awarded

The winner of the first Tenbury Windfall Draw, local resident Victor Woodford, is presented with his cheque and iPod touch in Tenbury Library by the Town Mayor Liz Weston.

Tenbury's Grand Windfall runs until the end of June, so there are still five more chances to win £1000, or an iPod touch - or both if your card is the first out and has at least five green apple stickers!

Completed Loyalty Cards for future draws can be handed in at Tenbury Library or the Pump Rooms. Entries for the next draw close on February 29th.

Almost every business in Tenbury Wells is taking part in the "Grand Windfall" Loyalty Scheme, which makes it easy for shoppers to collect the 15 stickers they need to complete a Loyalty Card and enter the draw. A red apple sticker is awarded with any purchase and if over £5 is spent, the shopper also receives a green apple, filling their loyalty card faster and helping them towards the five (or more) green apple stickers they need to win the iPod touch. Loyalty cards are available from participating shops and at the Library.

Monday, 6 February 2012

Great News - The Tenbury Regal will be run by Management Trust

Tenbury Town Council voted unanimously in favour of allowing the newly refurbished Regal to be run by a Management Trust.

The full agreement is yet to be drafted but the plan is for the first agreement lease to run for 40 years.

Cllr Rigby said "It is absolutely imperative that a Management Trust is formed" and that the Town Council should "move forward rapidly with the full formation of the Trust"

His comments were echoed by Cllr Drummond and Cllr Bowkett.

Cllr Price added that "the Council should support the proposal as Councils are not good at running commercial enterprises".

Cllr Hudson explained that the Management Trust would be a Charity and hoped to attract Donations and Bequests, but needed to demonstrate that they had a long term agreement with the Council so that people felt secure in the knowledge that their money would be put to good use.

First Windfall Draw Completed

The first TWO4B Windfall draw attracted 3,300 enteries (only 15 of which had been entered with no name).

The winning entry was drawn today by Tenbury Mayor Liz Weston and Chairman of the Tenbury Chamber of Trade, Sarah Thompson.

The lucky winner is Victor Woodford from Tenbury Wells, who will be presented with his cheque and iPod Touch this Saturday.

Sunday, 5 February 2012

Any ideas anyone?

THS to spend £1.75M on new classrooms

After a number of previous unsuccessful bids, Tenbury High School has been awarded £1.25M from the Worcestershire County Council Capital Building Programme 2012/13.  A further £0.5M will come from the schools own reserves.

The money will allow the replacement of several temporary wooden classrooms with an 8 classroom teaching facility with additional seminar rooms, offices and toilets.

The project is currently at the planning stage and is due to start Easter 2012 for completion Spring 2013.

Tenbury Bridge Work 4 Down, 6 to Go

More progress this week, with much of the downstream pavement being encased in concrete.
The reason for the scaffolding is now clear.  It is to support the "tenting" to allow the (I guess) sandblasting (or similar) of the railings to take them back to bare metal so that modern high specification coatings can be applied.
Hopefully the light coating of snow will not slow the proceedings.

It seems that the North car park has been full to capacity on many occasions last week & a number of people have questioned whether the diversionary routes are really being treated as promised in cold weather.

The Town was very busy Saturday morning, perhaps because of the threat of snow, but I found that I had to queue in quite a few shops (and not the usual ones) which must be a positive sign for some.

The first "Tenbury Windfall" draw takes place on Monday.

Saturday, 4 February 2012

Is Morrisons Environmental Policy harming Tenbury?

Morrisons lorries and fuel tankers are a common site in Tenbury even though the nearest store is 10 miles away.

Morrison vehicles regularly "short cut" through Tenbury to save the 2.3 miles extra driving up the A49 to the A456.  Of course there is no legal reason why they shouldn't use the A4112, although it is signposted as unsuitable for heavy goods vehicles.

Morrisons do have an Environmental Policy and one of their measurements is how many cases they move per kilometre, so they plan to use the shortest routes.

In logistics, we measure route planning efficiency in terms of how many cases per kilometre we are able to move. Over the last two years we have increased the number of cases per km by 12.7%.

A Morrisons driver did come amiss this week when he misread all the diversion & road closed signs and ended up in the Old Cattle Market temporary car park.  He also went on to prove that turning left out of the site is virtually impossible for a vehicle of that size.