Tag Archives: Canvey Island Town Centre

“A Really, Really Good News Story”! Street Market to act as “destination place” to draw more people to Canvey Town Centre!

Town Centre Master Plans

The validity of the Canvey Island Town Centre Master Plan, being signed off and used as evidence for the 2018 Local Plan, has not been questioned following the Cabinets decision to support a 3 year regeneration project consisting primarily of –  a street market!

The conclusion therefore now can only be, that there is no likelihood of the proposed comprehensive redevelopment of the Town Centre in the foreseeable future.

The delivery risks and obstacles that will have and impact of timescales have long been realised to be simply too great to be reliable or realistic.

Seemingly, there being no other realistic plan to regenerate the Hadleigh Town Centre, CPBCs Cabinet also supported a similar 3 year street market programme however the location of which is not known at this stage.

CPBCs aspirations for our Town Centres knows no bounds!

Town Centre

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Taking the Pee over the Paddocks? CPBC Chief Executive makes clear – we have No Plan!

So, what is it about “there are no plans for the Paddocks” that Canvey Islanders cannot understand?

Castle Point Council cabinet members and committee chairmen have each spoken out to reassure residents that there are NO plans. All to no avail, so now this rumour appears to have become such a sensitive issue that it has become important enough for none other than the cpbc chief executive to go to the Echo newspaper to also assure the community that “there are no plans for the Paddocks”

So what is behind these concerns that people are getting their knickers in a twist over?
The cpbc cabinet January meeting agreed to “note the opportunities afforded by a careful analysis of the wider site area”.

Also to “note the preparation of a detailed business case for a new community hall on the Paddocks site.”

Definitely NO plans mentioned there then.

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“Fear not, for I have a plan!”

The agenda paperwork went onto state;  “The conclusion of feasibility work reveals that the Paddocks Community Centre building has reached the end of its design life and is beyond economic repair. Operationally, the facility has limited flexibility, does not meet modern hire requirements, is energy inefficient and costly to run and it suffers from periodic recurrent anti-social behaviour issues.

The feasibility work shows however that it is possible to construct a new community facility immediately to the south-east of the existing building.”

” it would be possible to re-configure the car parking layout across the whole site, to provide an indicative capacity of approximately 380 spaces.
This compares to an existing car parking capacity at the site of approximately 200 spaces.” – “Car parking managed by the Borough Council.”

The last of the “free” car parking spaces in Canvey Town Centre!

Beginning to sound a little more like a plan now though?

The Canvey Comes Alive! Regeneration project with its Masterplan for the Town Centre and surroundings had a different Vision just some 9 years ago;

Paddocks Quadrant
This area will be a hub for the community, based on the retained health centre and an improved Paddocks community building.
Improve and expand the existing Paddocks community building
Community uses in the Paddocks including arts and culture, and café at the ground floor
Retain and improve the setting of Cisca House
New residential blocks fronting onto Long Road
Green the environment by creating a parkland setting
Retain and enhance the memorial gardens
Improve the children’s play space
Create new green pedestrian connections through to Long Road and Furtherwick Road

It appears that the Paddocks was considered in a maintainable and restorable condition at the turn of the decade. Some will note the aspiration to improve the play area and that the residential Flats have come to fruition since.

However cpbc appear to have a record of failure where maintenance is concerned. The Paddocks is a 70’s building, so not yet 50 years old. And yet considered not economically viable to maintain!

Would a “New” Paddocks be self-maintaining? Or would it be like any other asset, only of value if it receives the upkeep required?

So, perhaps Islanders should investigate the meaning of the word “plan”;*

plan – Noun

a set of decisions about how to do something in the future:

a type of arrangement for financial investment:

a drawing of a building, town, area,

plan – Verb

to think about and decide what you are going to do or how you are going to do something:

to intend to do something or that an event or result should happen:

Possibly then we can deduce that the cabinet members, the committee chairman and the cpbc chief executive officer may have been using “plan” as a Verb rather than a Noun!

If this is to be the case I would have thought they could have insisted that the Echo should use a capital P, as in Planning Application, when we are told that there are no plans for the Paddocks!

We are easily confused and oh so Easily Misled, us Canvey Islanders!

sarcasm – Noun

the use of irony to mock or convey contempt:

*dictionary.cambridge.org

Sainsbury’s dictate the Town Centre Plans

Castle Point Councillors and Officers have identified a list of developments that they hope will fulfil the first five years supply of housing growth within the forthcoming Local Plan. Surprisingly none of those listed are in the Canvey Town Centre. The Town Centre Plan was supposed to be the transformation of the centre. A Plan that has been years in the making both consulted and negotiated upon by Councillors, Officers and residents alike.

The initial projections caused concern as some 400 dwellings were planned, this was negotiated down by the Town Councillors to what was thought a more realistic 150 dwellings. However the first five years supply of housing in the Local Plan is showing none within Canvey Town Centre!

The “consultation shop” has recently had it’s occupancy extended so that the plans can be seen.

According to a report in the Echo, Friday 9th November, Sainsbury’s are now in a position to dictate planning for our Town Centre. The supermarket owners prefer to see a new building and multi storey car park built on the current car park with a new outlet taking over the current store.

They write: “We consider the policies should balance plans for the delivery of this housing growth within the centre, against encouraging retail development that will increase the attractiveness and the viability of town centres.”

This is either a direct letter or submission on the new Local Plan.

Either way, it spells the end of any hope for Furtherwick Road being converted to a “café culture” area with flats above local shopping centre. Instead we will have to get used to a tall concrete / brick structure dominating the whole area opposite the new Castle View School.

Councillor Smith suggests that “without  Sainsbury’s contribution nothing will happen.” A solution needs to be found ”which gives them what they want, but also gives us what we want.”

Did the Council want to include the dwellings in the first five years supply? Did they want the plans passed as the Council’s consultation approved them? There is a ring of desperation when the mantra of “we are in negotiations” is continually repeated.

Unfortunately Castle Point is in a weak negotiating position when it is made public that “without  Sainsbury’s contribution nothing will happen.”