Aldershot: £60k to be squandered on consultants

Joseph Goebbels had a maxim: tell a big enough lie often enough and you would be believed.

The imbecile leader of the council appears to be a successful graduate of the Joseph Goebbels PR Management School, as he thinks if he tells a big enough lie often enough, he will be believed, only it ain’t working.

No matter how often the lie is repeated, so-called ‘regeneration’ of Farnborough is not a success. Trashing a town centre is not regeneration.

The policy pursued in Farnborough was simple, get into bed with greedy developers, trash the town at their behest, ignore any objections from local community, local businesses.

  • Half of Farnborough town centre demolished for an unwanted Sainsbury’s superstore, many local businesses destroyed. Tenants kicked out of their homes, social housing destroyed, trees destroyed, green space destroyed to provide a car park for the unwanted superstore.
  • Queensmead repaved at a cost of £1 million, shoddy workmanship, cheap paving slabs, it floods every time a heavy downpour of rain, forming a linear pond down the middle, and often flooding shops.
  • Kingsmead, an all but derelict shopping centre, mainly empty, boarded-up units.
  • Firgrove Green, the only green space at the northern edge of the town centre, trees cut down, to be built upon for an unwanted Premier Inn.
  • Firgrove Parade to be demolished, destroying four local businesses, adding to the list of local businesses destroyed when half the town centre was demolished.
  • The Tumbledown Dick, against strong local opposition trashed for an unwanted Drive-Thru McDonald’s.

No matter how often the lie is repeated, Wastegate is not a success for Aldershot.

Local businesses have seen a drop in business since Wastegate opened. Even in its own terms, Wastegate is not a success, the chain eateries empty most of the day, Subway pulled the plug last week,  a Mecca for teenagers to hang around at night.

Adlershot typifies a failing town centre, boarded-up shops, binge drinking bars, junk food outlets, gambling joints, and the local businesses who struggle against all the odds are the ones who suffer.

Aldershot, like Farnborough, is suffering from decades of bad planning decisions, therefore to promise more of the ‘success’ of Farnborough for Aldershot, has to be seen as a sick joke.

The £4.5 million planned for Aldershot is to pour money down the drain, it will not do a jot for Aldershot, but what it will do is hit the few remaining businesses even harder, and lose them yet more business.

There has been no consultation in drawing up these plans (the norm for this dysfunctional council). No consultation once drawn up. An unmanned display board in the shopping centre (which has now gone), a questionnaire with no box to say no, is not consultation.

Now, yet more good money is to be thrown after bad, £60,000 to be spent on consultants to advise on how to spend yet more public money on destroying the town centre. Consultants to be brought in because the council lacks the expertise, though it seems to have done a good job so far in trashing the town and wasting public money.

We know the councils lacks expertise, that has been obvious for years. Why do they not try talking to people?

The senior official responsible is useless jobsworth David Quirk. This is the man who a few years ago, tried unsuccessfully to force once a fortnight waste collection on local residents. He was exposed then as an arrogant ignorant bully. He should have been fired, but as with all useless jobsworths, he was promoted.

The only people better at destroying town centres are the Israeli IDF in Gaza.

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