Some Good, Some Bad

Living in a place like Lymington, stuff that doesn’t even appear on the radar of many town dwellers achieves a certain visibility. Like buildings. Building them, knocking them down or just knocking them about a bit.

It’s true that Lymington has been branded as snobby and held up as some kind of paragon of nimby-ism. Now whilst that is true to a degree, and not wishing to sound like Kevin McCloud at his most verbose, the town has to look like a Georgian town. If it doesn’t, then it’s little different from many cloned market towns in this country with the same shops and the same gridlock come summer. Yes the main shopping street might appear to require climbing gear to get from bottom to top, it might have an old-fashioned (ie not farmers) street market every Saturday, but in essence people visit because it is not like many other market towns. In some degree it still clings on to it’s historical character.

So is all the talk of preserving the architectural integrity and character valid? Well, to my mind it misses the point. If Lymington changes too much then it will lose many of its visitors. If it loses too many of its visitors it will lose more of its businesses. It really is as simple as that. So when the current re-developers of the riverside site on the now demolished Webbs factory came up with a new plan, it raised more than just eyebrows. The artists impression was of a series of five storey buildings right on the river front, amounting to over 300 dwellings in total. Regardless of the improbable access for that many dwellers and cars of dwellers being just one small road literally a few feet from the level crossing, how was something as modernistic as that supposed to fit in with the historical quay virtually next door? The more cynical amongst you might suggest that it wouldn’t have to fit in because the development was so high that the quay wouldn’t be seen. It would appear that there is some leeway on the part of the developers, admitting to have ‘lost their way’, but perhaps you would excuse me being just a tad cynical as to how much of a detour they end up being willing to take. Anyways, for those concerned enough to type their objections, gen up on the latest developments (sorry) and get started here.

Whilst there is a lot of local opinion against that development, there is very mixed opinion on another ongoing saga. No, not the 18″ that had to be taken off the height of the new development at Avenue Road/Lower Buckland Road, in one word ‘Wetherspoons’. To drink cheap beer on not to drink cheap beer? Actually I suspect that should probably be ‘cheaper’ rather than ‘cheap’. Once again the Quaint Georgian Town has been accused of snobbery. I have gone through some of the aspects of this change of use application before and shall not revisit them. But it

DIY and builders

Like a lot of Lymington at the moment, our house has a ‘not yet finished’ look to parts of it. You know what it’s like, watch too many Grand Overdrafts type programmes and you instinctively feel you have to make changes. Of course the changes we are making are very sensible, life-enhancing and add value to our property. Funny how if you keep telling yourself something it turns out to be true in the end. No, really.

So how to get rid of an unused and unusable area which used to be a coal and wood storage area between the house and garage in a way which might even have Kevin McCloud salivating? Obviously the right builder is everything. Get that wrong and you’re staring down the wrong end of a very uncomfortable visit to the bank. So you go with a recommendation from friends and comfort yourself that even though you are going to have to wait six months before anything even starts, it’ll be worth it because no good builder ever says “We can start next week mate”. Continue Reading…