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Old September 27th, 2012, 03:20 PM   #161
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Minister's pledge on Morpeth flood defences work
by Dave Black, Evening Chronicle, September 27th 2012


Cameron Blackhall with the ruined carpets from his house

A GOVERNMENT MINISTER yesterday told of his devastation over the Morpeth floods ... just months after he announced the town should no longer fear another deluge. Floods minister Richard Benyon said he also understands the anger and frustration of local residents that the £21m flood alleviation scheme is not yet underway but promised that work will start early next year.

Mr Benyon visited Morpeth seven months ago to confirm that the vital project – which had previously been stalled because of coalition Government spending cuts – would definitely go ahead in 2013 after full funding was secured. At the time he said he hoped local people would be delighted that the “fear over future flooding is now lifting” from the market town.

Yesterday he was back in Morpeth on a fact-finding mission after scores of properties were flooded in the latest incident of the River Wansbeck bursting its banks. Mr Benyon said: “It is devastating for people in Morpeth whose homes have been flooded again, I stood here not long ago with a great sense of optimism in the town that the flood defence scheme was going ahead in the next few months. I just wish that this 'once-in-30-years' storm could have waited until we had built the improved defences.


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Old October 6th, 2012, 10:17 AM   #162
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Morpeth residents face two year wait for flood protection
by David Black, The Journal, October 2nd 2012


FAMILIES in Morpeth face another two years of anxiety before the scheduled completion of a £21m project to protect their homes from the threat of flooding, it was claimed yesterday.

The Morpeth Flood Action Group (MFAG) which was set up following the September 2008 catastrophe in which 1,000 homes and businesses were flooded says local people are very frustrated and angry that work on the towns vital flood alleviation scheme is still yet to start four years later.

The Environment Agency has submitted a planning application for the flood defence scheme, and hopes to get approval in December before starting work early next year. The new defences are scheduled to be in place by late 2014.


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Old October 19th, 2012, 11:36 AM   #163
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New Ashington Leisure Centre plans shown to the public
by David Black, The Journal, October 19th 2012


HUNDREDS of people in a former pit town have been shown plans for a flagship new leisure and community centre. The £20m, multi-use facility planned in Ashington is intended to replace the town’s aging sports centre – and help kick-start a wider regeneration master plan. Now images of what the new centre might look like have been released at a series of open days, which were attended by more than 300 people.

The building, on the site of the old Asda supermarket in Lintonville, will incorporate a swimming pool, sports hall, gym, spa, studio space, a public library, a contact and advice point for front line council services, a registrar’s office, cafe and meeting space.

A planning application will be submitted next month and it is hoped that work will start next spring, with the centre opening in 2014. The centre is being funded by the county council and the project delivered by its arms-length development company Arch Group.


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Old October 19th, 2012, 09:56 PM   #164
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Can't wait till they confirm the leisure centre. It'll give Ashington town centre the kick it needs.
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Old October 27th, 2012, 01:01 PM   #165
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Morpeth retirement apartments plan gets 100 objections
by David Black, The Journal, October 27th 2012


Henry Warne of the Morpeth Civic Society at Cottingwood Lane

A CONTROVERSIAL scheme to build dozens of retirement homes would rob a market town of a cherished “green lung” and spoil the character of the neighbourhood, opponents claim. Developer McCarthy and Stone wants to build a three-storey block of 51 apartments in the grounds of King Edward VI High School in Morpeth, Northumberland. The site is known locally as the Headmaster’s Lawn and neighbours say it is a valued and ancient amenity, and one of the few remaining undeveloped green spaces near the town centre.

More than 100 objections have been received to the application, which is also being opposed by Morpeth Town Council and the local civic society. Next month the county council’s north area planning committee will be recommended by officers to grant permission for the development.

Opposition to the scheme has been growing for months, since McCarthy and Stone first revealed its plans for the L-shaped block, including communal facilities, landscaping and car parking. Access would be via a new entry point from Cottingwood Lane, the steep and narrow road which takes traffic to and from King Edward VI School. Opponents of the scheme say the Headmaster’s Lawn should be protected from development. They claim the apartment block will be too high and overbearing for the area, leading to a lack of privacy, and will worsen existing traffic congestion and problems on Cottingwood Lane.


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Old November 3rd, 2012, 12:29 PM   #166
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Duchess of Northumberland opens Morpeth tea room
by David Black, The Journal, November 3rd 2012


The Duchess of Northumberland opening the Curiously Wicked Edwardian tearoom

A DOWNTON ABBEY-style tea room which offers a slice of Edwardian elegance and is fit for royalty received the perfect launch. The Duchess of Northumberland called in for tea and cakes and to officially open the Curiously Wicked Edwardian Chocolate Room at the Sanderson Arcade in Morpeth. The plush first-floor room transports customers back to 1912, with photographs, furniture, decorations, fittings and even recipes all out of the pages of Edwardian history books.

Mobile phones are banned to enhance the bygone era effect, staff are dressed in period costumes and address customers as sir and madam, and the whole effect is designed to provide a traditional experience while enjoying morning coffee, indulgent lunches or afternoon tea. Chef David Hall, who has cooked for the Queen and Prince Charles in the past, has researched old recipe books to serve up some history-themed dishes and treats.

Curiously Wicked owner, Krystyna Doods, opened the ground-floor chocolate shop a year ago, and has spent the last three months transforming the upstairs unit into the fictional Cuwick Manor tea room. Yesterday the Duchess was given a tour of the premises and cut a ribbon and unveiled a plaque to officially launch the venture, which employs 18 staff and is already attracting visitors from across the region.


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Old November 4th, 2012, 04:22 PM   #167
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That sounds good. I might try it some time.
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Old November 4th, 2012, 05:47 PM   #168
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What happened that bookshop did it stay or did it go?
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Old November 14th, 2012, 04:34 PM   #169
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This nutty scheme keeps coming back from the dead every couple of years or so...

Quote:
Northumberland £50m resort 'could bring 700 jobs'

The resort would include snow slopes, gorges and canyons
A planning application is to be submitted for a £50m resort in Northumberland that could create 700 jobs in the area.

The 800-acre adventure park planned in Widdrington would include a 50-acre lake, restaurants and the UK's biggest tree house adventure playground.

An application for the initial phase is being submitted to the council with a full application due in 2013.

If approved, the Active Lifestyle Resort could open in summer 2015.

Accommodation would include 100 camping pods and 400 holiday homes.

Outdoor attractions planned include snow slopes, gorges and canyons, equestrian, fishing, skiing, water sports, 4x4 off-road track, while indoor facilities will include climbing walls, a fitness centre, water park and spa.
More... BBC... http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-tyne-20323212

If the ski part happens ..... I d like to invite you all to my combined enthronement as Pope and appointment as Chief Rabbi... trebles all round.

Impossible to make it fly in its current format, though the sound of white coats flapping is slightly less than when an indoor ski slope was planned..

I quote a colleague of mine who knows the project:

Quote:
He is having 3m tonnes of 'inert' waste tipped on the site to build the hill. So that'll be 3m .\. 30 tonnes (trucks) at approximately £15 per ton. So £15 x 3m = £45m.

Now having made all that money, why would you want to go and waste it on a holiday park that no-one is going to go to?

Last edited by newcastlepubs; November 14th, 2012 at 09:50 PM.
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Old November 15th, 2012, 01:11 AM   #170
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Centre Parcs seem to do okay, but their setups are a bit bigger-budget than this.
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Old November 15th, 2012, 01:23 AM   #171
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I honestly think it's a good idea, possibly the wrong location in Northumberland though.

The town of Widdrington is poor, it is only really served by one shop, one chip shop, a railway line that has 1 train to Newcastle/Morpeth in each direction a day, and the bus service is pretty much non existent. The nearest town would probably be Amble which is a good 15 minutes drive away by car.

Even though it is primarily a caravan/holiday site the facilities it has would need to be accessible to the public as well to be worth while and it just isn't unless you have a car and even then it is out of the way. If it is to be in Northumberland then a surely a location nearer to Morpeth would be more suitable, if it doesn't have to be in Northumberland then how about the dunes just outside of Earsden on the North Tyneside/Northumberland border?
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Old November 15th, 2012, 01:53 AM   #172
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cranfan View Post
Centre Parcs seem to do okay, but their setups are a bit bigger-budget than this.
There are some differences... the cost of the ski side will be pretty astronomical [note the full conceptual] and, unlike a pool and a waterpark you start from a lower base of customers - in other words it's highly likely that most Centre Parcs customers will be able to swim. In that location the return on investment on the snowsports facility won't be high enough

To date no one has made the 'centre parcs' version of an artificial snowsports area stack up enough to start cutting turf, and lots have tried. The most famous [with a few mentions in 'The Eye'] is Snoasis, albeit a slightly different beast because of the indoor slope. The closest to making this concept work is Center Parcs De Kempervennen which is next to the Montana indoor ski centre. They share ownership, but crucially the ski facility is not part of the park, the usage is priced separately and it really relies on 'skiers' not the park for bums on seats [or skis].

Centre Parcs venues [arguably save for Whinfell Forest] also have a decent population in a driving circle around them, and no disrespect to Northumberland, this is landfill, at the edge of a pit village 'up north'.

There are several reasons I can't see this happening - not as proposed anyway, some of those are from what you might call 'inside knowledge' but others are based on the same reasons that I flagged that the proposed Sunderland and Gateshead indoor centres would never happen, cost and population.

It may run with the non snowsports aspects, or with a radically reduced snowsport facility [ie a 'nursery' area]. But as presented... nah.

Oh not even the conceptual drawings are actually for this site... they're from a proposal to build something similar in Cornwall. Check the area in the square highlighted and compare to the BBC story..



Quote:
Originally Posted by bigchrisfgb View Post
I honestly think it's a good idea, possibly the wrong location in Northumberland though.

The town of Widdrington is poor, it is only really served by one shop, one chip shop, a railway line that has 1 train to Newcastle/Morpeth in each direction a day, and the bus service is pretty much non existent. The nearest town would probably be Amble which is a good 15 minutes drive away by car.

Even though it is primarily a caravan/holiday site the facilities it has would need to be accessible to the public as well to be worth while and it just isn't unless you have a car and even then it is out of the way. If it is to be in Northumberland then a surely a location nearer to Morpeth would be more suitable, if it doesn't have to be in Northumberland then how about the dunes just outside of Earsden on the North Tyneside/Northumberland border?
It might have more chance in the central belt of Scotland or possibly North Yorks/perhaps sth of Boro between the A19 and A1... however [and here I am only looking at the ski side] both areas are already well served with snowsports areas, or rather this would have to be so big and spectacular to draw significant numbers of skiers from the indoor facilities that it couldn't make money. With size there is also an inbuilt problem - up to about 120-150m the user no's [sliders, not snowplay] and costs increase directly in proportion to length. In simple terms a 60m slope will get about half the visitors of a 120m one. Go much above 120-150 [though it depends a bit on width etc] and the user numbers graph still rises but much less steeply. However the other graph showing the costs of building and running the facility steepens markedly.

I hope it flies, but if it does it will bear as much resemblance to what's being floated as I do to Anne Widdicombe.

Last edited by newcastlepubs; November 15th, 2012 at 02:01 AM.
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Old November 15th, 2012, 11:36 AM   #173
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This one is also being covered on the Northumberland Area Developments thread, in the "Communal Area" of the North East England Forum, as it is located north of the area normally covered by the Newcastle Forum.

https://www.skyscrapercity.com/showthread.php?t=1246743

I have 'copied' some posts over to the above thread (to add to those already there) from this thread, for completeness.
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Old November 15th, 2012, 01:23 PM   #174
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Quote:
Originally Posted by newcastlepubs View Post
This nutty scheme keeps coming back from the dead every couple of years or so...



More... BBC... http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-tyne-20323212

If the ski part happens ..... I d like to invite you all to my combined enthronement as Pope and appointment as Chief Rabbi... trebles all round.

Impossible to make it fly in its current format, though the sound of white coats flapping is slightly less than when an indoor ski slope was planned..

I quote a colleague of mine who knows the project:
Maybe the plan is that the skiing element marks it apart from the likes of Centre Parcs, also if it is lower budget and priced accordingly it may attract a larger number of people as Centre Parcs can be pricey, especially in the school holidays.

I see they are proposing snow slopes, i remember when I was young skiing on a test slope at the Sheffield ski village where the university were developing a kind of snow substitute that did not melt outdoors in he summer for skiing and boarding, I wonder if they are looking at using something like this as I doubt they are relying on the 4 days of snow we get every year
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Old November 15th, 2012, 02:04 PM   #175
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Replied in the N land thread Nh has pointed too.
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Old November 16th, 2012, 03:25 PM   #176
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£20million revamp plans for Ashington Town Centre
Evening Chronicle, November 15th 2012


An artist's impression of the new development in Ashington

A PLANNING application has gone in for a £20m development in Ashington Town Centre. The Community and Leisure Facility promises to help revitalise the centre of the Northumberland town while bringing together community services. The planning application for the project has now been submitted to Northumberland County Council, with a decision expected early next year.

Those behind the new building say it is designed to be a welcoming and inclusive space. It will house a new swimming pool, gym, spa, sports hall and studio space to host classes and activities, and it will also be the first point of contact for frontline council services, including a library, registrar’s service, café and meeting spaces.

Peter McIntyre, managing director of Arch Group, behind the plans, said: “The new Community and Leisure Facility is at the heart of plans to regenerate and revitalise Ashington town centre. The new facility will act as a catalyst for further improvements to Ashington Town Centre and will provide high quality leisure activities and community- based services for local people. The designs have been developed after extensive consultation with local people. More than 2,000 people have provided feedback and given their views on the types of community and leisure activities they would like to see."


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Old November 21st, 2012, 11:42 AM   #177
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Sir John Hall to lead Ashington regeneration committee
by David Black, The Journal, November 21st 2012


Sir John Hall in Ashington

MINERS son, Sir John Hall, went back to his roots yesterday to help spearhead new efforts to regenerate the economy of the former pit town where he grew up. The millionaire property developer and former Newcastle United chairman mingled with shoppers – and renewed some old acquaintances from decades ago – during a visit to Ashington on market day.

Sir John has agreed to serve as independent chairman of the recently-established Ashington Town Team, which was set up as part of the Government-commissioned Mary Portas review of high streets. The team includes the town council, local shopkeepers, landlords and residents, and will play a key role in developing plans and proposals to revitalise the town centre.

Sir John, who was born in North Seaton, takes on his new role at an exciting time for Ashington, with work due to start next year on building a new, £20m leisure and community centre as part of a wider master plan for the town centre. Yesterday he said: “Ashington is my home town, I have got many happy memories of the place and I thought it was time to give something back. The town team wanted an independent chairman and I hope I can help achieve its aims.


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Old November 28th, 2012, 11:50 AM   #178
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Morpeth traffic lights campaigners confident review will lead to removal
by David Black, The Journal, November 28th 2012


CAMPAIGNERS say they are confident that an independent review of traffic management in a congested market town will result in the removal of controversial traffic lights from a key junction. Leading transport planning consultant Phil Jones is to conduct the wide-ranging review in Morpeth, which is about to finally get under way after being delayed. It will examine the controversy surrounding the traffic lights at the town centre Telford Bridge junction, but also look at wider transport issues across the town.

Now campaigners are hoping the review’s finding will provide the trigger which Northumberland County Council needs to remove the three-way lights, and restore the previous mini-roundabout at the busy junction. The lights were installed in April to cope with the predicted extra traffic from the town’s new Morrisons superstore at Low Stanners, but have sparked one of the biggest public protests ever seen in the town. In September hundreds of people took to the streets on a march in support of the Lights Out campaign, which has organised a protest petition signed by almost 2,500 people.


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Old December 7th, 2012, 10:14 PM   #179
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bigchrisfgb View Post
Keep an eye out for a store opening up in Northumberland as well. It's well known inside the company but I'm not sure if it's known publicly though it's not supposed to be. Actually you can keep an eye out for two stores in Northumberland.
Quote:
Originally Posted by ph1l1p14 View Post
I thought that you worked for Morrisons Chris? Well I am going to presume that one of the locations will be Morpeth, Sainsburys was originally refused permission in Morepth in 2010 and Morrisons was granted a new store last year so its current store will become available.
Sainsburys have now applied for a premises license in Shields Road, Morpeth.
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Old December 26th, 2012, 12:27 PM   #180
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£20m Ashington Leisure Centre set for approval
by Paul Tully, The Journal, December 26th 2012


An artist's impression of the planned new Ashington Leisure Centre

AMBITIOUS plans for a £20m leisure centre in a Northumberland town look set to be given the green light next month. The new centre in the heart of Ashington is being recommended for approval by planners after not a single objection was received by any of 14 statutory consultees or the public.

The county council planning committee meets in Morpeth to make a decision on January 8th 2013.


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