Sorry -these should have been posted properly before..
as alerted by recent comment:
"Can Peter Coopers very relevant comments comparing Bridport and Swanage be put on the main page to be discussed?"
At 10:10 PM, Peter John Cooper said...
7 or 8 years ago when we first launched a town regeneration project through Swanage Ahead we examined the state of other towns in Dorset. Bridport was a sad case. Premises boarded up, charity shops in the others, a large area of rubble behind the town centre. Yesterday, I visited Bridport again. It seems to be thriving. A general air of well being with lots of value-added shops, galleries and touristy places. The rubble field was filled with flats and houses. When I returned to Swanage I was immediately struck by how dowdy and run down it looks in comparison So what's happened in the intervening years? How come all our efforts at regeneration have come to nothing whilst towns like Bridport have steamed ahead? You can blame me if you like; I was chair of Swanage Ahead for two years. But I think there's more to it than that. Ideas?
At 7:37 PM, Anonymous said...
In reply to Peter John Cooper, I can only think that it stems from Swanage's running sore of lack of democracy in any meaningful form. Until we have a local council that represents all of its people and has some real vision we will be condemned to mediocre and worse solutions to the last century's problems. Until the trustees of the mowlem wake up and find the energy to resign we'll see no change for the better on the seafront. Until the great and good of Swanage realise that they are presiding over the destruction of a community there will be no revival here. Peverilpen
At 11:15 PM, Anonymous said...
Again in reply to Peter Cooper. Comparing the programming at the Mowlem with Bridport Arts Centre is a depressing experience. The latter shows what can be done. Bridport also has an excellent market which is visited by collectors from over a huge radius. Swanage Ahead wanted to establish a collectors market like this but the town council at that time was against it and the opportunity was lost. When we eventually got a market it offered the most uninspiring mixture of cheap plastic buckets and vegetables with the town councils seal of approval.
Is it just vision? We have the same political process as Bridport. How does it produce better results there? Is the political complexion different? Any ideas?