Sunday, June 23, 2013

Make Tonbridge Amazing!...

I've just discovered this YouTube link which I think may have been part of the Mary Portas pilot bidding. Can we make Tonbridge amazing? Have a watch and let's hear thoughts....

11 comments:

manofkent said...

So the people of the town want decent shops. But just how many decent shops would be required to make the town a shopping magnet? Its certainly not less than 20 and any lower figure would not attract customers in numbers that would be viable. That's apart from the transport structure and car parking that wold be needed. You can forget the 5 units planned by Sainsburys in place of Beales. You may have also notice that Beales sell a lot more cheaper brands thse days and can infer from this that it suits the pockets of the majority of the towns shoppers.
You may have also noticed the High Street closed today, even on a light traffic day did you see the queues in Vale Road?
Do we need another coffee shop?, one of the Sundays is reporting that Dame Kelly is to open one in Tonbridge, maybe it will sell Gold Blend.

tontweet said...

Dame Kelly is opening a coffee shop in Hildenborough manofkent

Congrats and thank you to the Tonbridge Town Team on the Taster Day. Fantastic day for the town and a great atmosphere!

Brenda Willis said...

I think Tonbridge is fantastic - as the town day yesterday proved. proud of our town. It is what it is, lets home in on the positives

Brenda Willis said...

hit send before I'd finished - Watching the vid the day yesterday homed in on all that people said was great about our town in the video: River - Castle - Markets - Community - parks. What more could we have asked for? If retailers won't come to Tonbridge its our fault for shopping elsewhere and then for being so negative, visous circle. Let the people know how good Tonbridge is, shop local, eat out local, use the parks, plug the Castle and keep Tonbridge alive. Had a great day yesterday, never seen such a mamouth event in Tonbridge. More please

Outraged said...

Now that Sainsbury's is in charge of Tonbridge I have to wonder if a sizeable chunk of the old TMBC should be closed down. After all, I would get Necter points for paying my poll tax. Mind you, on the darker side I note the new Sainsbury's Borough Council (SBC) has stifled any serious competition by turning vacant retail plots into dwellings. The gas works area and old BT site to name but two. The Morrison plot to open a store on the old Tar Works site has gone quiet! Probably SBC has vetoed that too! Watch that space! I expect it will be more "affordable" (slums) houses soon. Sadly SBC will make sure that no rejuvenation in the High Street gets started, they would far prefer all shops were closed down, (bar one that is).

Paul Bailey said...

Shame the opening sequence has to include a shot of the maniac on the mobility scotter; the one who thinks it is his God-given right to hurtle along the pavements at break-neck speed, intent on mowing down anyone and anything that gets in his way! (Not a good advertisement for the town, I hasten to add!).

Apart from that, it's not a bad video. Most people seem to know what Tonbridge lacks and what it needs, but there are very few concrete ideas of how to achieve its regeneration. (Pedestrianising the High Street is NOT a good idea).

Moving the market from its traditional site at the north end of the town, to the bleak and windswept railway car-park was a huge mistake. I am also rather sceptical about Sainsbury's plans, and am very disappointed that Beales will be surrendering the lease on Tonbridge's sole department store, (where am I going to buy my clothes from now?). Also, as Outraged points out, the scheme for the proposed Morrisons store has gone very quiet.

As most people in the video state, the castle, the river and the sportsground are the town's best assets, but it takes more than historic monuments are attractive scenery to draw people to a town these days.

I've already mentioned the disappointing shops, but Tonbridge is also crying out for some decent pubs, rather than the jaded, down-at-heel outlets catering for chavs, people in track-suit bottoms who have never been near a gym in their lives and those who like their eardrums blasted out by gangsta-rap (there's a "c" missing somewhere there!).

Brett said...

Paul - as mentioned before by others and myself the pubs in town are in a dire state... It says something when the only decent boozer in an old market town is a wetherspoons.... I would of thought more could be made of the riverside areas - the area opposite waitrose that has been derelict for some time would be ideal for generation and using as a possible central hub of the town - maybe some riverside bars and cafes and an area suitable for the market? Will probably be turned in flats though....

Brett said...

oh, and to clarify, by 'decent boozer' I mean somewhere that sells a nice pint, not the pub as a whole...
And, to agree with a number of posters here, just how many charity shops,barbers,hairdressers,dry cleaners and cafes does a town like tonbridge really need?

Colin Hill said...

For those who haven't seen it. Here is the link to the original proposal for the redevelopment of the Angel Centre site (published way back in 2007. It was I believe adopted. It will be interesting to see how different the development turns out to be when it goes for planning permisionhttp:
http://www.tmbc.gov.uk/__data/assets/pdf_file/0011/45668/Botany_Brief_Adopted_Dec_07wm.pdf

From memory in the original planned proposal for The Angel Centre as adopted in the mid 1970s the car park between Sainsburys and Angel Lane was to be a kind of town square. It is exactly all that but not in how it is used. I still think its an ideal site for the market to be held on. Far better than the markets present location.

Outraged said...

Nice contribution Colin. I doubt the new SBC will take too kindly to the market moving closer to their store, they may loose a few quid to market taders! we can't have that! Probably SBC will close the market down completely, after all they have managed to get rid of most shops in the High Street? Hey, does anyone else remember when Sainsbury's was an ethical grocer in the High Strret? It was next door to the Post Office, (now the home for social misfits! Aka Weatherspoons!

Outraged said...
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