Posts Tagged ‘The Brooks Centre’

Woods Estate Agents, Bradley Stoke, Bristol

Tesco in remarkable U-turn over town centre naming while Town Council ploughs on regardless in bowls dispute

Posted on Friday 9th May 2008 at 7:00 am by SH (Editor)

The Brooks Centre, Bradley Stoke

A remarkable U-turn by Tesco public affairs consultant Dan Bramwell has seen the supermarket group agree to hold a public consultation over the naming of Bradley Stoke’s new town centre currently under construction at Savages Wood Road. The move comes less than two weeks after Mr Bramwell stated on Radio Bristol that “having a competition now would delay the building of the town centre”. In the radio interview he also stated that a decision to call the development “The Brooks Centre” had been made back in March, when Bradley Stoke Town Council had been informed that no competition to choose the name would now take place, despite an earlier promise in a Tesco press release.

In a fumbled attempt at embarrassing Tesco, the Bradley Stoke Town Council (BSTC) planning committee had unanimously objected to a planning application by Tesco for advertising signage that sported the “Brooks Centre” name. In doing so they overlooked the fact that South Gloucestershire Council’s (SGC) consultation period for the application had already expired. The planning committee’s grounds for objection served only to demonstrate their ignorance of planning law, the grounds being dismissed later by SGC planning officials as “irrelevant”.

In an address to Thursday evening’s Special Council Meeting, Mr Bramwell confirmed that the town centre development is “on schedule” for opening “later this year”. Marketing of the retail and office units is well underway, he added. However he also made several references to the imapct of the “economic slowdown”, which could be taken to mean that the developers are struggling to find tenants for some of the units. No mention was made by Mr Bramwell of any progress made in agreeing a joint BSTC/SGC drop-in centre in the new town centre.

Tesco’s local marketing team is due to take over the reins from Mr Bramwell in six weeks time.

The public competition to choose the name of the development will be launched early next week. The judging panel will be formed of two representatives from Tesco and two fom BSTC, with the winner receiving a £50 voucher and the right to nominate a local school to receive a personal computer donated by Tesco.

Members of Northavon Bowls Club

The Special Meeting had earlier held a fractious discussion about the Council’s ongoing dispute with Northavon Bowls Club over their rental agreement at Baileys Court. Unusually, members of the public had not been given the chance to speak at the start of the meeting and chair Julian Barge was adamant that the discussion should exclude the views of the assembled group of over 30 onlookers, including many members of the Bowls Club. Councillor Mark Forsyth began the meeting by summarising the discussions that had taken place between the Council’s working group and the bowlers. Expressions of disapproval from the audience eventually resulted in the meeting being adjourned for the Bowls Club to appoint a representative to speak on their behalf.

Once the meeting resumed (but still officially in an “adjourned” state), Brian Newland of the Bowls Club refuted many of the allegations made by Councillors earlier in the discussion and repeated calls for an independent arbitrator to be brought in.

With the meeting then officially reconvened, the Council resolved by a majority verdict to inform the Bowls Club that no change would be made to the “originally proposed agreement” (incorporating an 8% annual increase) and that the Club be given a further ten days to accept it or “that would be it”.

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Special Council Meeting attracts media attention

Posted on Thursday 8th May 2008 at 4:05 pm by SH (Editor)

Bradley Stoke Town Council logoThe Bradley Stoke Journal has learned that tonight’s Special Meeting of Bradley Stoke Town Council [agenda] has already attracted the attention of the local media. A source within Northavon Bowls Club has told The Journal that a reporter and cameraman from the Bristol Evening Post will be at the meeting. The source also revealed that the Club has been asked to take part in a discussion on Radio Bristol tomorrow (Friday) morning at 8:15am.

The Special Meeting, which takes place at 7:30pm in the Jubilee Centre, Savages Wood Road, has been called to discuss the ongoing bowls dispute and issues surrounding the new town centre development.

Tesco representative Dan Bramwell is expected to attend for the town centre discussion.

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Town Council objections ineffectual as SouthGlos approves “The Brooks Centre” signage

Posted on Tuesday 6th May 2008 at 5:28 pm by SH (Editor)

The Brooks Centre Logo

South Gloucestershire Council (SGC) has approved a “controversial” planning application for advertising signage in Bradley Stoke’s new town centre development. As reported in The Journal’s article on 30th April, Bradley Stoke Town Council’s (BSTC) planning committee unanimously agreed to oppose the application at a meeting on 23rd April, but the committee apparently overlooked the fact that SGC’s consultation period for the application had already expired on 15th April.

An online objection was lodged by The Town Council on 28th April, followed by a written objection (also received by SGC on 28th April). However, a decision to recommend approval of the application had already been made by the SGC case officer with the issuing of a Circulated Schedule Report on 25th April. The final decision to approve was made on 2nd May after no requests were made by SGC councillors (or BSTC) to “call in” the application for a site visit or for determination by the SGC planning committee.

Quite why none of the SGC councillors representing Bradley Stoke chose to “call in” the application remains a mystery, particularly when four of these councillors are also members of the Town Council, including two (John Ashe and Sarah Pomfret) who sit on the BSTC planning committee that opposed the application.

The new town centre development is one of two topics to be discussed at a Special Meeting of Bradley Stoke Town Council on Thursday (8th May). The ongoing dispute between the Town Council and Northavon Bowls Club over the Baileys Court rental agreement is also on the agenda. The press and public are invited to attend the meeting, although it is noted that recent deliberations on both of these matters have taken place “in camera” (i.e. the press and public have been asked to leave the room during the discussions).

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Detailed plans of Tesco Extra store at “The Brooks Centre” made available

Posted on Tuesday 6th May 2008 at 12:10 pm by SH (Editor)

Tesco Extra Store, NewcastleTesco has released detailed drawings showing the internal layout of the new Tesco Extra store currently under construction within Bradley Stoke’s new town centre development. The plans have been on display in the entrance of the existing Tesco store since late last week.

The new store, which will have a floorspace nearly two-and-a-half times that of the existing store, is due to open in “late autumn”. The steel framework of the new store is already in place and the roof and side walls are currently being added.

Retail space in the new store will be split over two floors. The ground floor will provide a range of goods and services similar to that available in the existing store, but with a wider choice of product lines. One new feature will be an opticians, located towards the rear of the ground floor. A “travel money pod” is also listed.

The upper (mezzanine) salesfloor, occupying only about one third of the store footprint (the remainder being given over to storage and offices) will be devoted to non-food items. Principal product groups on this floor are listed as clothing, electrical and home entertainment. Dedicated areas for products such as laptops, cameras, MP3 players and SatNav units can be made out in the plans.

New services advertised on posters in the car park of the existing store include a Tesco Direct desk (acting as a contact point for the supermarket group’s catalogue sales operation) and photo-processing.

More town centre news (including maps, plans, images and press releases) can be found in our dedicated New Town Centre pages, accessible from the sidebar of this website.

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