Tuesday, 20 March 2012

Brighton Society supports St. Nicholas footpath

A new planning application BH2011/00654 has recently been submitted for the hotel at the end of Queen Square backing on to the St. Nicholas churchyard (which is owned by the City Council). 
An article on the Brighton Society website says:-
"The previous application, which attracted a great deal of opposition from the residents of nearby Wykeham Terrace, has been withdrawn. The balconies which would have overlooked the the backs of Wykham Terrace have now been omitted from the new plan.

The Brighton Society is particularly disappointed by another aspect of this application, in that it failed to provide for a pedestrian link between Queen Square and St. Nicholas churchyard. This was previously suggested by Council officers in the notes they drew up to facilitate sale of the site, but it was never presented as an option in the later public consultations.
The footpath has many advantages:
  • It would increases footfall in Queen Square altering its character from the present unattractive ‘no-go’ area.
  • It would be an advantage to any cafe/restaurant business established in the hotel.
  • It would provide a pleasant traffic-free pedestrian link to the City Centre as an alternative to Dyke Road.
  • By increasing public access to the south-east corner of the churchyard it would lessen the chances of anti-social behaviour in this isolated area.
  • It would open up easy access to one of the best views of St Nicholas church."
It appears that the proposals for a footpath were excluded very early on, mainly due to opposition from representatives of the St. Nicholas Green Spaces Association. It is difficult to believe that proper and thorough analysis of the advantages of such a path were carried out, or even that the opinions of nearby residents were  canvassed.

1 comment:

  1. Yes, this is a good point. At times the SNGSA does act as if it represents the views of people who live in the immediate locality. Some of its members do not live in the immediate area. The same goes for the church, many of whose regular attenders do not live in its parish. Even the vicar lives the other side of 7 dials and the curate lives in Hove! It is a shame that the SNGSA does not concentrate on improving the Green Spaces themselves, rather than voicing opinions on planning applications. The Rest Garden has become a total mess in the last few years, with dogs off the lead running around in packs at certain times of the day, and with severe damage to the once beautiful grass, particularly at its east end, caused by the constant wear and tear of dog-walking. One of the SNGSA complaints about the previous rink development plan was the issue of noise, and yet the peace of the Rest Garden has been destroyed by the noise of dogs barking. It is a real shame that the SNGSA has not worked to have dogs removed from the Rest Garden so that a much needed place of peace in our busy city can be restored.


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