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Newsletter - April 2014

posted Mar 25, 2014, 3:56 AM by George Grace

Welcome to the April edition of the newsletter (which is also the quarterly update) – the final one in advance of the annual report in June.

Here’s the latest news:

St Catherine’s Shopping Centre Redevelopment

This is subject to major redevelopment plans and is excellent news for this end of Bedminster as we expect it to have a major regenerative impact.

The Town Team has given the developers unequivocal support to succeed in their planning application – more details below. If you wish to personally make a comment on the development please use the council’s planning portal www.planningonline.bristol.gov.uk - Ref 13/05616/P.

If you have a business on East Street or Bedminster Parade we recommend you try to do so as this development will probably have as much positive impact on East Street as anything that the Town Team can do with its modest resources.
Waste – Save 25% 

BID members can now benefit from a low cost, high quality recycling and waste management service that will save money, reduce congestion and improve the appearance of Bedminster's streets.

Following an extensive tender process, the BID team has appointed SITA UK as our recycling and waste management partner. Benefits for BID members include reduced waste management costs, an improved recycling service and collections at a time to suit you.

We estimate members should save around 25% cent on their recycling and waste disposal costs.

Contact SITA to find out more. Telephone 0845 600 2836. Email bedminster@sita.co.uk 
 
Planters on East Street

As we write more planters are being installed on East Street – including opposite Mill Lane where we hope to launch a small Saturday market in April with the help of UWE students from the Bower Ashton Campus.
 
Marketing

We are grateful for the excellent work of Plaster our PR and marketing advisors. Our hits on our customer facing website www.bedminster.org.uk and Facebook and Twitter platforms continue to grow and remind people of all the great reasons to visit Bedminster.

If you want to promote any event or special aspect of your business please contact Nicole at Plaster at nicole@weareplaster.com.

Other current marketing projects include renewal of the lamppost banners on East Street and Bedminster Parade – sorry this has been slower than planned.

We are also recruiting a Markets/Events Organiser to support the major ‘close-the-road’ events on East and North Street plus other projects emerging.

Christmas Lights – we haven’t started Christmas yet(!)  but a quick note on this as it’s a significant part of funding to date. We now own all the lights seen last year having spent over £20K over two years – in future years it will just be a question of installation costs.
 
Built Environment and Transport Group

Resident Parking Zones are coming to both ends of Bedminster. We have now held numerous meetings with council officers to ensure any negative impacts on business is mitigated as much as possible.

Better Design, Better Places: We have commissioned designs for two small but important public realm projects.
 
  • East Street ‘Plaza’ – ie the junction of Mill Lane has in our view huge potential to extend to create a small square or plaza and become a much needed heart for East Street
  • West Street Community Hub – ie the wide pavement outside and adjacent to Tesco. Local group Way out West along with West Street Traders have done wonderfully well to secure funding from Tesco to improve this space. The Town Team’s input is to pay for design to try to ensure a first class community hub is created.
Crime

BTT have agreed the following priorities (by 2016) with Neil Burwell, the council’s crime officer for the area, as they make up the largest volume of offences impacting on the BID area or result in a high level of fear or distress amongst customers and traders:

1. Reduce Violent Crime by 15%
2. Reduce Theft from the Person by 15%
3. Reduce Shoplifting by 20% 2013/2014
4. To reducing overall crime by 20%

As BTT contribution we have agreed to pay nearly c£3800 towards a radio scheme targeting the above priorities.
 
Skills Week

Dates are confirmed 31st May to 8th June. Moving forward well though need clearer commitments from businesses – more details below.
 
Arts Conference

BTT is hosting an Arts Led Regeneration Conference at the Tobacco Factory on 4th April courtesy of Arts Council England funding. Our successes are being recognised further afield and people wish to come and hear what and how we’ve done things.
 
Gathering Voices Meanwhile Space

We are delighted to welcome wonderful musical community group, Gathering Voices, to our first proper ‘pop-up’ – a long defunct couple of retail units in St Catherine’s Place, East Street.

Nick, Hannah and the crew are a very friendly bunch so drop in if you’re passing. They will also be holding small musical events in St Catheine’s Place, seeking to get a busker scene going and taking care of our piano which we hope will make a return to the retail streets this summer (thanks Luke Jerram).
 
Annual Report

Our financial year is from May to May and so in June each year we will publish our annual report with the generous free support of Aims, local business accountants.

Thereafter in the spring we will repeat the area/street and theme meetings to brainstorm fresh ideas for the BID funds in the forthcoming year 2014/15 – thinking caps on for what you would like to see the BID do going forward! In the meantime a summary of projects delivered and projects planned for the remainder of this year is set out here.
 
New Directors

We would like some! If you are interested in becoming involved in any of this please do get in touch. Minimum requirements are to come to 2/3 of the monthly meetings (always first Tuesdays of the month at 6pm) or if these times are inconvenient you could get involved in the marketing or built environment group.
 
Key Contacts

Simon Dicken, Wilkinson, East St: Man242@wilko.co.uk
Ben Barker, GBCP: benbarker@blueyonder.co.uk 
George Grace: george@towncentred.com

Further Notes

Re: Redevelopment of St Catherine’s Place Shopping Centre, East Street, Bedminster - Extract of Town Team Letter to Developers and Council
 
Thank you for attending the March Board meeting of the Town Team and explaining your plans in respect of the above. We now understand you are seeking the Town Team's views as part of your planning process.
 
Bedminster Town Team Board agrees with the independent comments of the professionals on the Urban Design Forum:
  • that the development has the potential to 'create a much-needed ‘sense of place’ around St Catherine's Place
  • the potential to kick-start similar levels of investment and development along this unloved boundary to Bedminster
  • how this scheme could establish a regenerative effect on nearby sites, to the economic and physical benefit of the area
  • the regenerative effect on the local economy could thereby be further enhanced
  • a ‘gateway’ effect as traffic enters the city and begins to overcome the all-too-evident feeling of Malago Road/Dalby Avenue as a ‘back-lands bypass
  • the enhanced pedestrian route through the site is good in that it is inviting, will have new shops (plus the existing supermarket on a renewed lease*) and directly relates to East Street
  • the area will be open to the public at all times in future
  • quality of the architecture is evident in your presentation, which is welcomed
(*which we understand will become vacant if the redevelopment does not go ahead).
 
The benefits for this part of Bedminster as a retail and leisure destination are clear, manifold and powerful, not to mention the provision of much needed housing in a highly sustainable location in terms of city centre proximity and public transport provision.
 
Accordingly the Town Team is pleased to give its full and unequivocal backing in the hope that you may commence works as soon as possible and release the benefits listed here.
 
Re: Town Team Response to Council re RPS in/around North Street
Our priorities are that:
  • A minimum of 50% of all roads leading/contiguous with North Street are shared P&D and RPS (the shared spaces being the shopping end (we do not support all the shared spaces being on Upton Road, several minutes walk away)
  • North Street should be dedicated to P&D only and not shared with RPS
  • P&D is extended to an hour free not half an hour and that the first half hour is 'properly free' (ie the first hour and a half is £1)
  • P&D should operate 6 days per week including Saturdays
  • Our Bedminster Parking 250 Project is properly recognised with as many unnecessary double yellow lines in/adjacent to the shopping area made available for shoppers - in our view Raleigh Road is an excellent example of this with dozens of spaces immediately available
  • There is net gain of shopping car parking spaces post RPS/P&D relative to the current situation given our own Bedminster Parking 250 Project calculated c200 spaces being freed up
  • Feedback: we require 'scientific' feedback of the impact of RPS here and in other areas of the city where it has already been introduced (in particular impact on shops £ turnover - the Town Team will support this process and already has five businesses volunteering information)
     
Skills Week

BS3T For Skills is a creative eight day event that involves the sharing and learning of new skills that the Bedminster community has to offer. Workshops will be held in venues scattered around the area creating a hop-scotch path for visitors and residents to just jump onto and join in.

A variety of local traders will be opening their doors to share skills as part of 100 programmed events including learning to produce handmade glass with Bristol Blue Glass, Bedminster’s older residents sharing traditional crafts and lost arts through the University of the 3rd Age, graffiti workshops with Upfest - The Urban Paint Festival, Grey Pride, a walking football contest with Bristol City Community Trust and LinkAge Bristol, and crafty lessons with Paper Village Arts.

If you are interested in teaching someone a skill, sharing your skills with others, or you are able to offer a venue for hosting our skill sharing sessions, then please get in touch at skills@bedminster.org.uk

Town Team Sponsors

We are grateful to local lawyers Barcan Woodward and Aims Accountants for the generous free legal and financial support they give to the Town Team.
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