Friday, 20 February 2009

Credit carrot crunch

I've been talking to people about the market over the last couple of weeks. I've been genuinely surprised about the amount of deep, sincere feeling that the market elicits from local people. Although you come across the sections of the community that no longer go into town either because of mobility issues or just driven out of the Town centre by the prohibitive parking costs, even amongst this group of people there is a significant proportion that passionately care about the market and see it as a key feature of the towns heritage.

I went into the mobile consultation unit on the market square this morning to have a look at the proposals. Many have been commenting positively about the idea of placing a version of the historic fountain as a key feature on the entrance of the square. Aside from that there was a lot of focus on the potential of large and small events on the site rather that the core work of providing a shopping area for fruit, veg, meat, fish and clothing.

The council representative glibley commented that if the town wanted big events "We can close the market when we need to". With the potential loss of the Balloon festival impending the horizon looks like event on the market square and the the eventual ceasation of the market as traders find it hard and hard to survive with the credit crunch and a council unsympathetic to the difficulties of running a business as a local trader.

Friday, 6 February 2009

Development in Sixfields

Let's get this clear ... I have a complete aversion to any sport. 14 years of being a cricket widow and always being picked last for the team kinda did it for me. However as someone with a sport aversion ... I believe it's really important that the sixfields development goes ahead if the Northampton is to survive and have a hope of thriving.

The key problems are with the exclusive relationships that the Borough have with other key partners in regenerating the town who see anything as a threat but still won't put the required time and energy to give the town a boost.

Time to re-evaluate relationships at the very least.

Time to lay it on the line...but will it happen ... we'll have to wait and see.

Thursday, 5 February 2009

Northampton- extreme snow, and the need for authorities to lighten up

There were high spirits and a atmosphere of a town where people really cared about each other and wanted to create out of the snow the essence of joy and playfulness. So was it right for the six foot snowball that appeared outside the Grosvenor Centre to be destroyed ?.

With town campaigns increasingly led by the people and not politicians it's concerning when there has been yet another incident when authorities seem to be out of touch with the wishes of local people.

The tenth anniversary of the MacPherson enquiry report being published is coming up in a few week. In the report, ten years ago there was out and out damning condemnation of the police but have things changed now?

Race for a long while has been something that's been too hard to raise as an issue in Northampton with the oh so many problems that are faced locally ... failing schools despite more government investment than anywhere else in the country, a dying town centre, an absence of ambition. Perhaps the key is harnessing the peoples sense of injustice. In that way perhaps race really does need to be on the agenda.