South Tyneside Council announces “major new planning policy”
I don’t really wish to labour the point, but it is one of the things which mark out South Tyneside’s Labour controlled council as being unwittingly slow in its efforts towards regeneration at times. This major new planning policy document offers the building of 71 new homes on the old School Street site in Hebburn, the creation of a waterfront park on South Shields riverside and the building of 1,300 new homes in a mixed retail and leisure development at the former Circatex site at Laygate, South Shields.
Nothing really new here of course, these plans have been talked about for at least a year, and indeed the 71 homes at School Street in Hebburn were due to be started last summer! As for the former Circatex site, our Labour councillors have been talking about redeveloping it for FOUR years now, after I gave them some ideas back in April 2006!
I keep labouring the point that we always seem to be playing “catch up” with our neighbours, one only has to take a fleeting glance at the opposite side of the River Tyne to see the pace of change in North Tyneside, Newcastle and Gateshead continue to forge ahead with their partnership in rejuvenating their river frontage and town centres, and Sunderland has undergone some phenomenal changes over the past five years.
But don’t worry, all the plans will be going into the Local Development Framework (again), so that we can have another year of “consultations” and another “new” announcement, meanwhile the decay in Frederick Street in South Shields will continue.
I think I know what Labour in South Tyneside understands “regeneration” to be, it is the rehashing of age old policies!
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