Plans to turn the ‘tramway’ – a section of the old North Somerset Railway Line in Brislington – into a PR-friendly hipster heaven Greenway for cyclists and snooty businesses running out of shipping containers have gone off the, er, rails.
Trendy property-less firm, Meanwhile Creative, got planning permission back in March from the council for the temporary greenway on land long earmarked for the Callington Link, on the route of the proposed A4 Bath Road relief road, by promising their greenway was “ready-to-go”.
Or perhaps not. Over six months down the line and Meanwhile Creative are now wheeling out that all-purpose excuse “the cost of living crisis” and claiming it’s unlikely to go ahead. Informed opinion, however, says this is because neither the applicants nor the council owned the land and the people who did wanted £250k for it.
None of this is surprising to some Brislington locals who have dubbed the efforts of Lib Dem Councillors Andrew “Reg” Varney and Jos “Peculiar” Clarke and Labour councillor Tim “The Ripper” Rippington along with Bike Bristol and the Meanwhiles as “an embarrassing failure”.
Lookout for that lovely link road coming to quiet green space in Brislington soon!
Our favourite proposed Bristol City Council budget amendment came courtesy of Tory councillor, Graham Morris “Minor”. “Reduce investment in Energy Company,” by £250k he cooed and use the money to “resolve the perennial flooding problem of Scotland Lane.”
The road in Brislington has been closed for months and Morris claims that there’s a “£30k cost to the Council of closing, cleaning and reopening this important transport route” every time it floods. So far, so Tory. But it was council finance officers’ response to this that was the real eye-opener. “It is not clear how this would affect the company,” they explained.
Excuse me? We’ve invested millions in an energy reselling company – Bristol Energy – and nobody at the council has the foggiest idea what affect this money has had? Apparently not a problem for the Bristol Labour Group who still voted Minor’s amendment down.
Better money’s tipped into a murky black hole for PR purposes than solving an actual problem in the city then?