The Square Meeting: Some Thoughts.

It’s near-impossible to write a conclusive write-up of last week’s meeting: there were so many issues discussed and few absolute conclusions, but if you really want, we have the complete meeting on video here: to peruse if you fancy. Cheers to James from web-wizards HexProductions for filming.

A few points did stand out. The whole concept of Beeston redevelopment is frustrated not by the politicians, not by the developers and not even by NET, but rather the complex nature of who actually owns what. NET have been given a pretty much free license to get the tram in to schedule, hence the wide expanses of land they have temporary permission ownership of which makes a coherent plan impossible. An audience member pointed out that this was hardly democracy, and I can see her point. Deputy Leader of the council, Cllr. Pat Lally, preferred to see the issue with pragmatism rather than despair: all parties were working to the best of their abilities within the constraints applicable to them. Hmmm. I’m not so sure, and I didn’t see a huge amount of concordance with this opinion from the audience.

L-R James Greenway (Henry Boot); John Delaney (Head of Built Environment, Broxtowe Borough Council); Me; Cllr Barber (Chair, Development Control). Copyright Lewis Stainer.

A quick vote at the end of the meeting was taken on the question: Do you feel more confident about the future of Beeston now than you did at the start of the meeting? Very few hands were raised. We have an interesting few weeks / months ahead.

A few minor points. We are losing the clock rather than being treated to a working one. The reason is quite simple: Henry Boot are worried that they’ll get a deluge of calls should it ever prove to be less than reliable. This wasn’t swallowed by many: surely technology could provide a robust model. Apparently not. Stumpy, which my colleague on The Beestonian Tamar researched and wrote about here: remains in it’s present spot, due to it not quite falling into the jurisdiction of Henry Boot. I’ve long been a fan of Stumpy, or, to be give him his correct name, Water Head; while the Beeston Express have long campaigned to have him reduced to rubble. A quick vote suggested that you too value our quirky, if incongruous sculpture. However, eventually it would be good to see Stumpy relocated to a more sympathetic spot: a churchyard, in water, perhaps; I’m sure Sheila at The Beeston Express would find this a suitable compromise.

If you do want to know more about the meeting, feel free to get in touch with myself. If you want to talk to Henry Boot directly, Director James Greenway has asked me to publish his direct email where he’ll be happy to engage with you: . The plans have now been formally submitted to the council. I’ll report more when I get it.


I’d like to thank everyone who attended and those who made it possible: the panel, John Clifford School, James Hall, Lewis Stainer and Tamar Feast for getting some last-minute printing sorted. Cheers. I now fancy running a hustings for the County Council Elections; though I’ll need some training in how to properly run these things. Ah well, time to contact the professionals:


I mentioned just under a year ago how myself and Rex Walker from CP Walker had been given a credit in a short film by a local filmmaker after I ran a piece asking for a house to film in, and Rex provided a un-tenanted property. Well, the same producer, Steve Deery of Pondweed Productions has had his new short feature short-listed for an award; he’s made it to the second round and if you go and have a watch of it, you’ll help him to the prize. So pop over to and give it a go.