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Council To Spend Millions On Improving Town - A WAB Debate

Thursday August 15 2013


Council set to spend millions on boosting town Council set to spend millions on boosting town


BARNSLEY Council is set to spend £25million over the next five years to boost the town's economy, including more improvements for the town centre. Where would you spend the money? Have your say on our WAB Debate.

The Barnsley Economic Plan hopes to create more jobs and businesses, while at the same time developing a vibrant town centre that will attract more visitors and investors.

Money will be spent on the town centre, a retail academy will be set up in an empty shop in the Arcade to help new business growth, there will be work to establish new industrial parks, more roads will be improved and there will be 100 new apprenticeships.

Council leader Sir Steve Houghton says the spending is vital - despite the tough economic climate with redundancies amongst the council's staff and millions of pounds being slashed from the budget.

"The town has got to move forward for all the financial difficulties and cuts we're facing," he said.

"Despite all the problems, we still have to do good things, we have to do the right things, we cannot simply sit and do nothing.

"The council tried simply hoping things would get better in the 1980s when facing massive cuts - nothing improved, things just got worse.

"We also have to continue the development of the town centre. We have to develop a vibrant town centre because we need people and businesses to move here, to invest here."

The refurbishment of Regent Street, Eldon Street, Regent Street South, Royal Street, Hanson Street, Eastgate and Market Hill will also commence.

What do you think to this? Which areas need improving? Have your say below.

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Reply Posted by Tom on Thursday August 15 2013 at 11:26
Can we spend some of this money to support cycling? It is the transport of the future and making it safer and more accessible should give a good return on investment. Cyclists get fitter, lose weight, reduce their carbon footprint, road wear and congestion and don't kill people like cars do. We need more bike lanes and trails, and education for cyclists and other road users. Kids should be able to ride to school, workers, shoppers, etc. all need better facilities.

Reply Posted by Clayton on Thursday August 15 2013 at 13:11
That's a good idea Tom, i know for sure i'd rather my son take a 10 minute cycle to school with a group of friends than me spending 40 mintues in a morning being stuck in a traffic jam wasting diesel and possibly getting a wing mirror knocked off. Although it'd only happen if like you say there were more bike lanes especially on school routes with them being so busy and also if schools provided somewhere to safely lock the bikes up without worrying they'll get nicked!

Reply Posted by flapper on Thursday August 15 2013 at 13:55
The retail acadamy sounds good,but I,m afraid you need a heart like a lion to start up a small business . Its hard,often unrewarding,extremely time consuming and the owner of the business is the last person to get wages from the till. Of course then theres the very large risk of a larger enterprise moving in and swamping you out. New retail parks are springing up everywhere. Small business,s just cannot compete with the giants,as can be seen all over the borough. Hope the £25million,s spent wisely and thoughtfully. Barnsley needs it to work.

Reply Posted by Guesty Mcguest on Thursday August 15 2013 at 14:10
Had a look at the report most of it is going on council house improvements, not new council houses or the economy, don't expect to see to many changes

Reply Posted by flapper on Thursday August 15 2013 at 14:16
Is the money already spent then? I hadn,t realised there,s a report about it. So that means, no, maybe there hasn,t been alot of thought gone into it. Barnsley town centre needs help. Its dying. I went last week,its not really nice. Why is Doncaster so much better, it seems to be thriving or am I mistaken.

Reply Posted by Guesty Mcguest on Thursday August 15 2013 at 16:42
Yes Flapper, it is check out on the ocuncil fb page with a link to their article.

I made a mistake in saying that the majority of this figure will be on council houses, it won't, the council has 161million to spend in the next 3 years the majority on 4,700 council houses.

The works in town include, 3million on an Urban Centre Infrastructure, 8Million on the compulsory purchase order for the market (nothing on development though)

600,000 grand on civic and mandela gardens which I assume is the claim they put in against the cock up it became.

In terms of anything actually being developed there is not much at all, its all compulsory purchase orders, and infrastructure and maintenance, you know stuff you just expect. Goldthorpe is getting about a million spent on just demolishing old stuff and creating a green corridor, that's it.

Reply Posted by like magic on Thursday August 15 2013 at 15:58
alacazam and its gone wrong. Morallee impaired council won't have the people's interests at heart those at the top will suit themselves. All this moaning on here about Labour, there is a definite rightwing shift creeping from central government and the weak won't fight for us

Reply Posted by Guesty Mcguest on Thursday August 15 2013 at 16:49
Like Magic, I love sir Steve a man by his own admission "tried simply hoping things would get better in the 1980s when facing massive cuts," and is still in a job today with a knighthood. He doesn't mention the labour boom years of the 90's and 00's when public spending went out of control because that would be too much like admitting that BMBC frittered away 100s of millions of public money.

Reply Posted by Stevo on Thursday August 15 2013 at 16:46
I am very scared at the prospect of BMBC squandering £25 MILLION quid.

A "Vibrant" Town Centre they say?

Firstly, why not get the bobbies out on the beat to give "leave town" orders to the shouty Alchos that congregate around the Peel Street lavs , Mushroom and Plinthwhen the sun is shining?
AND the Smackrats that continually pester for "busfare", move them on for gawds sake!

That would make it vibrant for starters and encourage more people like myself to return to the town to do my shopping.

Yes the town centre does need improvement, but £25 million quid is a hell of a lot of money and we all know that a large majority of that will be eaten up with "consultants" fees.
You also have to attract the types of businesses that will keep the footfall in the town on the up.
At present the low end shops like Sports Direct, Primark and TKMaxx that do extremely well and are the lifeblood of the town along with the countless charity shops, there are no "specialist" shops in town and all that does is drive people to Meadowhall.

Car parking is too expensive and the shop rents are too expensive too.

30 years is a hell of a wait to see any improvements, just shows how idiotic the local authority is.

Oh and Surprise, Surprise Houghton bleats on about cuts yet again, change the record for gods sake!

Reply Posted by flapper on Thursday August 15 2013 at 17:03
Well, I wouldnt like to have to sort it all out thats for sure. All we can do is hope theres some reasoning behind the plans that we cant see. The trouble is,I wouldn,t know how and where to start spending it. We do need a larger range of shops,money on the civic yes,bring folk in. But the gardens, not sure. I lost faith when some silly sod got the silly nitcomb. There is lots of money wasted,and it makes your blood boil. I wonder if anyone has the foresight to ever be able to plan a vibrant Barnsley, not a Tuscany one. It seems as if there is no planning leadership.

Reply Posted by mark on Thursday August 15 2013 at 19:21
What, spend money on the Civic. The council have just spent something in the order of £18 million refurbishing the place. That was a lot of money to spend on a collection point for the payment of council tax.

Reply Posted by Swifty on Thursday August 15 2013 at 17:48
£25 million that's some money. I wonder how many councillors will sit on planing and advisory boards to get there share of the money.

Spend the money on the Elderley Disabled and vulnerable people. and employee some one to hand fines for Dog Crap. I'd be happy to do it on a commission only basis.

Reply Posted by sue on Thursday August 15 2013 at 17:51
Gudrun swifty, you,d be a millionaire by Christmas.

Reply Posted by Ackerman on Thursday August 15 2013 at 19:09
Was in Barnsley the other day was dead nobody there

Reply Posted by mae brussel on Thursday August 15 2013 at 21:30
While everybody in the country is having to make do with less and less barnsley council and others and the government seem to have a completely bottomless pit of money. barnsley clowncil gets money by the barrow load usually given bu unnamed sources who also protest there lack of money.
But if your asking what i would do wit the millions first i would sack all the greedy bastards who run the council.
And i would put it back to the people who havepayed for this now pathetic excuse for a town and to give work to people and bring it up to scratch for its people to be proud of

Reply Posted by Guesty Mcguest on Friday August 16 2013 at 10:36
Talking of Wasting Millions, the biggest white elephant in recent years, Digital Region which has had 10s of millions ploughed into it has been dropped in a small article in the chronicle this morning.

Old Steve and his pals late last year and early this year knew it was a failed project but said they " had no choice" but to continue pumping money into it.

laugh a minute at BMBC at least the other soouth yorkshire councils also showed their incompetence by sahring the cost

Reply Posted by Beep Beep on Friday August 16 2013 at 12:00
The council is inept. It will not be well spent. Look at the history.

Tuscan gardens? The huge wall? The civic? The many bus station/ train station fiascos? The town hall? The cost of parking?

Ring any bells???

Reply Posted by flapper on Friday August 16 2013 at 12:44
I'm with you BeepBeep. Some of the ideas have been crazy. It makes your blood boil. And the silly nitcomb? Whoever organised that one needs sacking. Of all things Barnsley needs ,that should never have been on the list. I feel like they have no idea,and don't seem to care that they may upset the rates payers. I would like our eyes/ears/voice man Dan Jarvis to issue a statement explaining what use the nitcomb is. Some one should try and explain what the big idea behind it was. He should actually be more involved by talking to the people and putting our views to the council,when they are spending our money. I want Barnsley to look nice yeh, but before I decorate my house,I make sure my fridge,s full,my mortgage is paid...oh..and don't forget my rates!

Reply Posted by Stevo on Friday August 16 2013 at 16:18
I've just been into town for the first time in a while on this lovely sunny day.

(Are you watching Hoyland Red?)

There were no shouty Alcholics or smackrats pestering for money which made a nice change.

What the HELL has happened to the Market?

By my own admission it is quite a while since I went in but was shocked at what I saw, where are all the stalls?
They used to be loads that were chock a block!
And now there are hardly any!


Reply Posted by Guesty Mcguest on Friday August 16 2013 at 16:25
The Market Stall Holders are all sat in awe of the fountains as according to shirk steve, miller et al it will solve all their financial worries with the flock of business that will follow

Reply Posted by chris lufc on Sunday August 18 2013 at 01:48
25 billion could not improve barnsley! It's the people that live their need sorting as your own say in other posts, most of you are drunk no good for nothings with no respect for anyone or anything... any money spent on improvments will be destroyed by the vile barnsley people.

Reply Posted by guesty mcguest on Sunday August 18 2013 at 10:17
I was driving leeds yesterday on the way to a job and though how lucky I was not living I laughed when I considered, for every backaward person in barnsley there are 100 more in leeds, plus doley alcholics and druggies, plus leeds has murders and crime and drugs on a scale unseen round here. Those council owned tower blocks are lovely breeding grounds for crime and scummyness - the council estates bring up your next generation of brap brap gangs, you have the asian groomers, the yardies that hand about. Barnsley Town centre is a mess yes, but 10 minutes away and im in green countryside.

You think because you're from leeds you have a better life, let me tell you something. Leeds is a cesspit, same as most cities, you have more people on the dole, you have more drug addicts, alchos, illegal immigrants, muslim fanatics, rapists, weirdos, scum and all the like.

Leeds has some nice areas and buildings, they weren't built for you they were built to make rich people from down south more money. The shoppong centres are not owned by anyone in leeds, all the financial companies are london based and half the apartments in leeds city centre sit empty because the people of leeds can't afford to live in them. The wages are around the same in leeds as they are in barnsley but the property prices aren't unless you want to live in the squalor of areas such as chapeltown and the like. So I drove for 20 minutes through the centre of leeds saturday through all the grey drabness horrid ring road industrial parks through the muslim only areas and past the pudsey murder flats and thought, thank god I don't live here. But please keep telling people about barnsley being a shithole, we don't want any of your type here anyway bringing the place down.

Reply Posted by guesty mcguest on Sunday August 18 2013 at 10:19
PS this is supposed to make sense, my dodgy laptop keyboard and mouse allows me to jumble stuff up into jumbled up mess.

Reply Posted by guesty mcguest on Sunday August 18 2013 at 10:24
and now in english

I was driving leeds yesterday on the way to a job and though how lucky I was not living there. I laughed when I considered, for every backaward person in barnsley there are 100 more in leeds, plus doley alcholics and druggies

Leeds has murders and crime and drugs on a scale unseen round here. Those council owned tower blocks are lovely breeding grounds for crime and scummyness - the council estates bring up your next generation of brap brap gangs, you have the asian groomers, the yardies that hang about and the chavvy teenage parents, every estate a different jeremy kyle episode.

Barnsley Town centre is a mess yes, but 10 minutes away and im in green countryside and fresh air with low crime and nice people.

You think because you're from leeds you have a better life, let me tell you something. Leeds is a cesspit, same as most cities, you have more people on the dole, you have more drug addicts, alchos, illegal immigrants, muslim fanatics, rapists, weirdos, scum and all the like.

Leeds has some nice areas and buildings, they weren't built for you they were built to make rich people from down south more money. The shoppong centres are not owned by anyone in leeds, all the financial companies are london based and half the apartments in leeds city centre sit empty because the people of leeds can't afford to live in them.

The wages are around the same in leeds as they are in barnsley but the property prices aren't unless you want to live in the squalor of areas such as chapeltown and the like. Thats why so many commute to leeds as they can live in nice areas and not stay in leeds when their work is done. Don't believe me look at the train station, bus station and m621 come 5 every day.

So I drove for 20 minutes through the centre of leeds saturday through all the grey drabness horrid ring road industrial parks through the muslim only areas and past the pudsey murder flats and thought, thank god I don't live here. But please keep telling people about barnsley being a shithole, we don't want any of your type here anyway bringing the place down. Isn't there a song most football fans sing when playing leeds on matchdays? "we all hate leeds s**m"

Reply Posted by redss on Sunday August 18 2013 at 18:56
I lived in pudsey for years and visit every month and its 100 times nicer than anywhere in barnsley you only need to walk round pudsey park to realise that you moron at least Leeds council pump money into the public unlike bmbc. And as for Leeds SCUM at least we was brought up to work and earn a wage unlike the lazy SCUM in barnsley, I have never worked somewhere as lazey as barnsley, and even them who do work try to get away with as little work as
possible but want paying as much as they can get.

Reply Posted by Guesty Mcguest on Monday August 19 2013 at 09:37
Ha Ha Ha ^^ point proven.

Reply Posted by speak sense on Tuesday August 20 2013 at 11:34
Just because BMBC doesn't pump money into the public doesn't mean we're all scum. As you can see from this feedback alone the 'majority' of people in Barnsley are screaming out for improvements to be made, it's not our fault we're not being listened to. Fair enough you have a better council infrastructure and people who actually communicate in office, maybe BMBC should take note of that seen as though a lot of us do prefer to go shopping in Doncaster, Leeds etc including myself but to label us all the same i'm afraid your sadly mistaken...

My husband has worked for the last 8 years since leaving school at least 6 days a week and at least 12 hours a day. When our 1st child was born he spent the first 6 months of our sons life down London just to earn a wage and then he'd come home once a week for 4 hours... to then drive 4 hours back down. His wage was just enough to pay our bills but he did it because we chose not to live in a council house and get benefits and to rather get a morgage and work hard for our future and our childrens future. We don't drink, smoke, hardly ever go out because we can't afford to yet we are happy because we have no debts and our children are being set an exapmle buy us for when they are older. Tell me what's so LAZY and scum about that???

My father came from nothing, i grew up knowing my dad worked abroad and he sent us money home to live on even though we could only live on the bare minimum and i watched my mother go without food so we had 2 days worth of stew etc. He is now extremely wealthy, all through hard graft and starting from the bottom, working where work was and depriving himself of hardly ever seeing his family... What's LAZY about that?

I could very easily take handouts and it would be so much easier but we choose to earn our our money and provide for ourselves than take the easy option of hand outs or benefits, all because i feel i was fetched up the right way knowing my parents earned what they have which is exactly what i want for my children and not be fetched up in a society where handouts are the norm.

Yes there are idiots, benefit cheats, drug users, alcoholics etc in Barnsley but so are there in Leeds and everywhere else up and down the country.To label people just by where they live is the mind of a very uneducated individual.

Reply Posted by Stevo on Thursday August 22 2013 at 07:11
Fantastic post and hats off for the hard worth ethic, even though it must have been heart breaking not to have hardly seen the kids.

Just a pity more people don't read from the same page.

Reply Posted by redss on Sunday August 18 2013 at 18:58
Famous saying in barnsley, owt fo nowt.

Reply Posted by clare taylor on Sunday August 18 2013 at 20:40
get some proper shops there is nothing in the town center,the museum in the townhall is brilliant though

Reply Posted by sid on Sunday August 18 2013 at 21:09
Your rite Claire. I have given up shopping in town I,m afraid, and I'm sorry about it. But times precious so I need my shopping trips to be fruit full. Donny or York for me . I don't want the Meadow hall experience, I want a nice high street,pity its not our own high street. You can't support what's not their.

Reply Posted by Mark on Monday August 19 2013 at 22:57
Well then Sid, if you want your shopping to be full of fruit, you should be visiting Barnsley market!

Reply Posted by sid on Monday August 19 2013 at 23:24
Tried it mark, sick of paying for 6 apples, 3 of which are bruised up. When the town meets my needs as Donny does and York, I,ll be there like a flash. Can't shop when there are no shops. After years of shopping here,ive got sick of it. I,d like to bet Thiers not many councillors that shop here either? I do use Barnsley if they can supply my needs, just bought blinds,a kitchen,new garden,all from suppliers around here,but the actual shops are just not their I,m afraid. I do my bit where I can. We need clothes shops mostly.

Reply Posted by sid on Monday August 19 2013 at 23:37
The markets a bit poor anyway, last time I bought fish, it was bad. I had to sling it, no tea. Shame that,I used to work on their too. So, bad fish, bruised apples, grotty eat yesterday strawberries, no thanks. Soz Mark.