Letters and emails February – March
Only five minutes for objections
Tesco have achieved outline planning permission for a supermarket on the Braid. I, and many others, strongly objected to the development. Some of us attended the Northern Area Planning Committee when the application was discussed. Our objections to the outline planning permission included –
• increased pollution and traffic which would create a traffic hazard next to the newly designated Town Green. The junction of the access road and the A1068 would be dangerous.
• it would adversely affect local shops.
• there was no attempt to consider the alternative site on the industrial estate.
• the site is on a grade two flood plain and should never have been approved.
• there are local supermarkets in Ashington and Alnwick. Amble already has supermarkets and a wide range of excellent local shops and businesses.
Objectors were only given five minutes between them to speak to the Northern Area Planning Committee on a development that would affect Amble for generations. Amble councillors simply endorsed the plans. Objections by the council officers were overruled. Objectors had no opportunity to question the councillors some from Berwick and Hexham.
We find it unacceptable that the identity of the supermarket chain was only disclosed after the outline planning permission was approved; so much for transparency, openness, freedom of information. If people had known that Tesco was involved, the outcome of the application may have been very different, given substantial national opposition to the aggressive ‘Tescoisation’ of many British towns.
The Retail Impact Assessment by Fairhurst and Partners, was commissioned by the developers. They found, surprise, surprise, that there would be no adverse impact on local shops, and the Braid site was the only site. This report seems to be an important factor in the decision to approve the outline development submission. When a similar development was proposed in Wooler, NCC did their own assessment and refused planning permission on the grounds that it would have an adverse effect on local shops and retailers. Why wasn’t an independent assessment done in Amble, a very special and unique community?
I contend that the application by the developers was grossly flawed, seriously misleading and not properly handled. The applicant was only disclosed after permission was granted. Many people think this development is inappropriate and damaging with the possibility of many Amble shops going under, being boarded up or turned into charity shops.
The whole application should therefore be subjected to an immediate independent public enquiry.
Mariners View, Amble
Still time to have your say
As one of the organisers of the Town Meetings held in 2009 to debate the new supermarket, I’m delighted that we’ve just had a Public Meeting which the Town Council pledged to organise, albeit that it wasn’t in the form that was originally promised.
According to Cllr Hinson it was felt there would not be sufficient things to discuss about the latest (Reserved Matters) application so the Council didn’t feel it necessary to organise a Public Meeting. It had been decided instead to organise a display of the plans where the public could drop-in and leave their comments. This would be followed by the Town Council’s Planning Committee Meeting at which they would consider the Council’s response to the latest application in the light of the comments received by the public.
They felt this was an adequate response, although he admitted it was not what had originally been promised. This did not seem to me to be a Public Meeting in the normal sense of the term, a view shared by a number of others who attended the Town Meetings.
The meeting was due to be held in the Town Council’s offices, but when I assured him that a lot of people would be coming it was agreed to move it to the Trinity Methodist Church Hall. It was also agreed to extend the normal speaking time of 5 minutes for and 5 minutes against the application, on the basis that the more people who registered to speak the longer the time that would be allowed. The final decision was to allow four speakers for, and four against.Cllr Hinson referred to this arrangement as a Public Planning Meeting which seems an appropriate description.
If the new supermarket is built it will change Amble forever, so it’s important that the views of as many people as possible are considered. Even if you weren’t able to attend the Council’s ‘drop-in display’ or the Public Planning Meeting you can still let your town councillor know your comments in the normal way, or you can ask at the Council’s office at The Quayside.
There’s still time to write to the County Council with your comments as the deadline has been extended to 10th February.
New planning laws are being drafted that will allow local communities a much greater say in what is built within their area. I welcome this much wider public debate and would urge everyone to become involved in the planning process, especially if you haven’t done so before. If we want better shopping in Amble, everyone needs to take part in the debate.
Roger Armsden, Rivergreen, Amble
A reminder to all allotment holders that rents are now due. Please call at the stores on Saturday or Sunday morning. Secretary
The Baby and Toddler Group would like to thank Birgit Brooks, Amble Harbour Co-op, Queen Street Co-op, Tesco, Heron’s, Jasper’s, Cedar Café, The Farm Shop and Fine Design for their donations to our Christmas raffle.
Kathleen, Gary Callaghan and Shirley Mather
Amble Dovecote Baby and Toddler Group
Apologies for errors
We apologise for errors in a letter in our last issue. In George Young’s letter Stile Sixty should have read Hill Sixty. Apologies to Mr Young and those of you who spotted the mistake.
Help for ex service personnel
Kenneth Hatton served in the Second World War and suffered terrible injuries when his aircraft was brought down in the desert. He has suffered many ailments as a result of his war injuries. He has devised a system which he believes may benefit people with similar physical conditions as he describes below. You can contact him for more information.
I have suffered over 68 years and the number of pills and potions I have been prescribed must be a record. My weight varies with my intake. I am beginning to dread taking more.
Cold feet, summer and winter when getting out of bed in the mornings, unable to feel the cold tiled floor of the bathroom. Dizziness, swollen mouth, rashes, eyesight changes, aches and pains in limbs, cramp, lumps and muscular pains, inability to lift a bottle of milk, headache, back ache, stomach pains, and more. Many of the pains are still unbearable.
My remedy of the warm blanket improved my blood pressure, and that of five friends, making us all feel so much better. No cramp and my fat ankles returned to normal.
ANAF: Army, Navy, Airforce Help & Advisory Group
I am concerned about men and women in our forces who have been injured in war and I have set up a charity: “Army Navy Airforce Help Support & Advisory Group”. Many ex service personnel are eligible for awards, grants and allowances. Our job is to ensure that if they qualify for help, they get it..
Members of our group are located in the North of England and the Borders. Any man or woman who has served in any war, and any branch of the services, can contact us for help.
67 Gloster Park, Amble NE65 0JA Telephone: 01665 712898
Want to become a cadet?
We are currently looking for new recruits to the Army Cadet Force. We offer military subjects like drill, map work, shooting and camping but we also do adventure training such as canoeing, orienteering, sailing and archery which develop teamwork and confidence building.
We hold four weekend camps throughout the year at Otterburn and for the annual camp in the summer holidays we go away for 10 – 14 days, so you would get to see other parts of the country. Summer camp is where we do the majority of the adventure training.
It costs around £50 which covers travel, accommodation and three meals a day. Weekend camp is £10 which again covers travel, accommodation and meals.
The Amble Detachment parade is on a Monday and Thursday 7pm – 9pm. Cadets get issued with uniform but need to buy their own boots. There is a joining fee of £10 to cover insurance.
I must stress that the Army Cadet Force is not a recruiting agency for the Army. However some cadets do go on to join the Armed Forces. We are sponsored by the Army so we wear the uniform and teach some military subjects.
If anyone is interested in joining us they can contact me Sergeant Hedley, Detachment Commander of Amble.
WSI Terrie Ann Hedley,
Amble Detachment Commander