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News » WAB Debate


Town Hall Square - What Do You Think?

Friday July 19 2013


Town Hall gardens: What do you think? Town Hall gardens: What do you think?


AFTER months of wondering what was hiding behind giant hoardings, the new Town Hall square was briefly revealed to the public. Although it's largely complete, there is still work going on as paving has had to be re-done as time had run out as the June 27 opening of Experience Barnsley involved using the entire square. Have you been down to see? What do you think? Have your say on our latest WAB Debate.

Visitors expecting to see exactly where the £1.9million the scheme has cost has been spent will be disappointed as most of the work that has gone on is already hidden from view underground.

That includes filling in and making safe cellars left behind by terraced homes which stood on the site, creating retaining walls, building an underground control room, giant water tanks and filtration systems.

"I believe this and similar projects will lift Barnsley town centre, stimulating growth and encouraging investment that will strengthen the town centre business economy," Cllr Roy Miller said.

"This and other measures set out in the council’s economic strategy will be the catalysts to create new jobs and grow business, enhancing the vibrancy of the town centre, both day and night.”

Do you think it's made the town centre look better? Have your say below.

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Reply Posted by Redrew on Friday July 19 2013 at 17:51
It's a pity that people feel the need to use it as a skatepark. It looks good but how long before there is a need to take measures to stop skateboarders like they did with the cenotaph outside the town hall to stop them damaging it.

Reply Posted by hmmm on Tuesday August 6 2013 at 20:04
how does skateboarding damage anything o.0

Reply Posted by A Nonnie Mouse on Wednesday August 7 2013 at 13:13
Scuff Marks, kick marks, graffiti, litter, noise pollution, inconsiderate people who expect people to stay out of their way - lot's of damage from the scuffing of the boards and the metal on the axles etc.

Reply Posted by hmm on Thursday August 8 2013 at 10:45
thats funny i see non of this anywhere

Reply Posted by ray on Monday August 12 2013 at 18:42
yorkshire stone chips when you grind on it, check out barnsley colleges all the edges came off within weeks so yeah they do cause damage.

Reply Posted by mappman on Sunday July 21 2013 at 08:23
Yet again Roy Miller talks out of his elbow
"I believe this and similar projects will lift Barnsley town centre, stimulating growth and encouraging investment that will strengthen the town centre business economy," Cllr Roy Miller said.
His on cloud cuckoo cutting the rent on town centre shops and reduce parking fees for on street parking will stimulate growth. Why will this new area bring investment into Barnsley when half the shops are boarded up due to the greedy council not only raping it's taxpayers but driving retailers out of the town.
Note to BMBC
eg: If you have 200 shops 100 open paying £500 and 100 boarded up = £50,000
would it not be better to have 200 shops paying £350 = £70,000.
It's not rocket science it's just simple economics.

Reply Posted by Stevo on Sunday July 21 2013 at 11:06
Exactly what I said a few months ago.
Car parking - too expensive
Shop rents - too expensive, this would explain the constant merry go round of differing shops in town, especially the Mall.

Reply Posted by paul on Monday July 22 2013 at 15:15
The council don't set or charge rents or rates it's the VOA a government body ,The council don't own the buildings in the town centre private owners do and it's them that charge the full rent and say's who rents them,Has for making the town look nicer to the eye don't you think some investor or person from out of town might think Barnsley looks like a nice place i'll go there instead of Sheffield or Doncaster ,It's peoples shopping habits too ,Lazy shopping in super markets or meadowhall that have made the decline in town centres instead of walking around town looking for their shopping .

Reply Posted by Stevo on Monday July 22 2013 at 17:49
Paul, I never said the council dictated rents.

As for the meadowhall comment, I wouldn't say shopping at Meadowhall is "lazy" shopping,on the contrary, the parking is free and it has exactly what I want and I can be there and back in an hour.

I don't go into town unless absolutely necessary, constantly being pestered for money for smackrats and being shouted at by Alcoholics is not my idea of a good shopping experience.

Reply Posted by paul on Tuesday July 23 2013 at 09:16
Stevo you can shop where you like but you spending your money out of Barnsley is only boosting Sheffields economy not Barnsleys ,And i don't know about being pestered for money by druggies never happened to me or shouted at by drunks ,It's places like meadowhall that have taken business away from town centres same with supermarkets LAZY shopping under 1 roof crap.

Reply Posted by Stevo on Tuesday July 23 2013 at 14:01
Paul, it is a sad fact of life that Barnsley just doesn't have the things that I want to buy in its shops.
I have been pestered on numerous occasions by smackrats wanting to borrow money (must just have one of those kind faces eh?) the last time being a few months back when a kid wanted to borrow 13p for "busfare".

As for the shouty Alchos, they seem to come out and play on the benches on Peel Square and the Mushroom when the weather is nice god knows why they don't get a move out of town order by the police.

If I go into town now I stick the old I-pod on, saves a lot of hassle.

Anyway back to the topic, I went past the Town Hall the other week and it the gardens actually looked quite nice, even the rusty nit comb with the background of the town hall behind it looked erm nice.

I don't think I will persuade any more people to come into town though, I suppose only time will tell.

Reply Posted by guesty on Monday July 22 2013 at 14:38
All the Coucnil works go on underground these days where people cant see whats going on.

Back in Feb this year the a press release came out from BMBC saying, despite the bad weather we had this year the gardens were on track for a Mayday opening. When the mayday came and went I contacted the council to ask why they weren't open, following that they said they had "decided" not to open gardens and instead they would be ready for the grand opening of the new museum. Some people had book their weddings at the registry office being told they would be ready then and it wouldn't look like a building site - it did.

I wandered through the town on opening day and noted how the planters were only half done and there was no fountain, it also looked like they had just relaid over the old carpark, the lines were just the same. you also were not allowed into the gardens as they weren't ready

It came as no surprise that a week later the hoardings were back up and work was recommencing as BMBC told us they had "planned" to redo the work following the opening.

I dunno who does planning at Barnsley Council but I seriously think they should just shut the department I am wondering what fancy credentials you need to get a job cos planning skills, time managment and budgeting skills don't seem to factor in, - the blind leading the blind springs to mind.

Reply Posted by anonymous on Monday July 22 2013 at 14:49
We have one of the most beautiful town halls in the country.Shame we have not got a town centre to match it .............

Reply Posted by Jon on Monday July 22 2013 at 15:09
Can Roy Miller please learn that he needs to put into action his words and stop just flapping his lips. No matter what story WAB brings to us, where there is a problem, Roy Miller usually seems to be involved and always has a comment. Roy, do the decent thing, pipe down and get some work done for your expenses or just retire & let someone who do the job get elected. You know you are safe as you are part of the Labour party, however, anyone under the Labour party would get elected. You just go to show that chocolate teapots really aren't a good idea.

Reply Posted by IK on Monday July 22 2013 at 17:11
Why can't people answer the flaming question and stick to the point instead of deliberately going off at a tangent so they can whinge incessantly about absolutely anything else, every time something like this is posted? - The council, tax payers' money, councillors, roads, schools..... seriously, it is getting really boring. The Town Hall gardens look good. If you think so, say so, if you don't, say so...if you can't do that, then don't bother at all.

Reply Posted by Stevo on Monday July 22 2013 at 17:41
Everyone is entitled to an opinion, its called free speech.

You also have to look at the bigger picture to make sense of just how inept the people sat in their newly renovated municipal ivory tower really are.

If you don't like the fact that BMBC couldn't organise a p*ss up in a brewery then don't read the posts that people put on here.

Reply Posted by Guesty Mcguest on Tuesday July 23 2013 at 09:06
Besides which they are not even finished yet - half of the area has been pulled up and still has hoardings round it, rest is just a paved area with some room for planted shrubbery, so if you think that a couple of million for that is money well spent (and before you go on about lottery money - i am implying value for money) then let me know when you need any work on your house doing - I will be happy to oblige in true council style I will over quote start do nothing until deadline has passed, do some work - pull it up again saying it was in the planning give some excuses and then get roy miller to release a statement - then bill you and tell you it was value for money.

Reply Posted by Beep Beep on Monday July 22 2013 at 17:25
IK what you say is all very well and the gardens may look nice ( not seen them) but one thing is for sure. The rest of Barnsley is an eyesore. One nice thing will not change that. You just cannot polish a turd.

Reply Posted by Val on Monday July 22 2013 at 20:59
I regularly shop in Barnsley town centre and have never been pestered for money by anyone or shouted at by alcoholics. Car parking is free on a saturday and compared to other similar sized towns Barnsley has far less empty shops. Wish people who obviously don't like our town would go and live somewhere else!

Reply Posted by paul on Tuesday July 23 2013 at 09:20
Well said Val, You hear a lot on here whinging like mad but you never hear that they've got of their arses and made a change.

Reply Posted by Val on Monday July 22 2013 at 21:01
Forgot to say I think the town hall gardens will be great when finished. Just need more improvements in the rest of the town.

Reply Posted by laura on Thursday July 25 2013 at 09:36
i think it looks great its a nice place to socialize but will it stay that way? or will it end up being covered in litter and graffiti and drugs with no one bothering to try stop it? and the sculpture was the biggest waste of money in the history of barnsley. i could have pulled it our of a scrap yard for free.

Reply Posted by flapper on Thursday July 25 2013 at 15:43
with you Laura. who ever signed on the dotted line for the sculpture should hang their head in shame.Disrespectful waste of OUR money.

Reply Posted by ET on Thursday July 25 2013 at 16:41
1.9 million mmmmmh!!!! what would that have paid for if this fancy new project could have been held off while the economy was more stable. Meanwhile food banks are needed in some areas of the borough

Reply Posted by Belinda Chappell on Friday July 26 2013 at 09:57
Ok throw me to the wolves but I'm gonna do something far out and different from everyone else and just answer the blinking question!!! I think the town hall square looks lovely and will be a great place to sit in the sun. I went to the Experience Barnsley Museum yesterday and was very impressed. Well done, well thought out .

Reply Posted by AnonymousTyke on Friday July 26 2013 at 10:01
A wonderful idea Belinda, without doubt, but I am sure you understand perfectly why the people of Barnsley are getting angry! We have poverty, yet, like the French Royal Family before the revolution, BMBC seems to be ignoring the masses and wasting money! I mean, the huge nit comb did not cost us anything said the councillors... but then, we found out that it did. They are liars! Glad you enjoyed your trip into our wonderful history!

Reply Posted by guesty mcguest on Sunday July 28 2013 at 14:05
This isn't about the museum Belinda It's about the gardens which have now taken 3 months longer than they should and about 8 months to basically relay a carpark which again I must point out are NOT finished.

Reply Posted by AnonymousTyke on Friday July 26 2013 at 09:57
Why do we need 3 councillors per ward? Why do we need another museum? Who do we think we are? Paris, Milan, Barnsley... hmm, doesn't seem to have a ring does it, but HOLD ON, maybe we could have guided tours of the MonkSpring area at night, like a HORROR TOUR. A tour of Wakefield Road to find a BATS, or perhaps we could study the MYTH OF NEW BARNSLEY MARKET... They could come via YORKSHIRE AIRLINES... Wipe thi FEET.

Reply Posted by Dawn on Monday August 5 2013 at 16:58
The 'Nit comb' is horrible, there are so many talented artists out there why couldn't the council have chosen something more aesthetically pleasing instead of that ugly rusting monstrosity?
Sorry but that's my opinion

Reply Posted by Goodienuff on Monday August 5 2013 at 23:48
I would rather have seen £1.9million spent in the health service, education, and going to stock the many 'soup kitchens' which are necessary now in Barnsley in this day and age.

Such a huge waste of money in Barnsley, seeing works unfinished, then standing around serving no purpose due to lack of funding. Sadly, giant combs and plants won't keep the wolves from the doors of hundreds who struggle to pay their way. Some townsfolk are unable to afford the price of a bus ride into town, yet we go on throwing money down the drain. Get a grip guys - this is wasting OUR hard-earned money

Reply Posted by Moe. on Tuesday August 6 2013 at 20:33
Some people are lucky to get one bus every hour to Barnsley and we should not have to have food centers and why isn't the Council Barnsley Council any more not a private Company dictating Houseing and the rest ?????????? and yes the Town Hall is ruined now also is housing what a future

Reply Posted by john on Tuesday August 6 2013 at 22:20
1.9million for a fancy garden at least the old car park brought in a little revenue to the coffers. can anyone in tarn say that they actually wanted this new fancy garden that we can sit & enjoy 4 roughly 30days a yr

Reply Posted by A Nonnie Mouse on Wednesday August 7 2013 at 13:20
The photo refers to a garden, the article mentions a garden, the council said it would be a garden, yet what we've been given is a paved over car park with steps and a rusty statue. The statue has also been completely spoilt by the awful pictures/signs placed all around it's base - oh and by the way WAB - any chance of you finding out what happened to the holly bushes that Roy Miller's backside said would be planted around the base of the statue???

Reply Posted by philip Taylor on Saturday August 10 2013 at 19:31
Needed something that would catch the eye ,well designed and prominent. Lot better than Mandela gardens which needs to be more visually stimulating.