Comment: Expensive, certainly, but is Parade revamp a bad thing?

Watford Observer: Comment: Expensive, certainly, but is Parade revamp a bad thing? Comment: Expensive, certainly, but is Parade revamp a bad thing?

I have outed myself in the past as something of a bridge-sceptic. When it comes to Watford pond anyway. For the sake of clarity, I should state I have no objection to bridges in general; in fact I find them an efficient and inoffensive method of traversing aquatic obstacles.

Nevertheless, I have previously raised doubts over the necessity of having one across a pond which has never hampered any pedestrian’s journey through The Parade.

Well, now we can all see this addition to the High Street in all its glory. And, although I am not ready to completely recant my bridge-scepiticism, it’s really not that bad a feature.

I’m still not completely convinced it adds anything per se. But as part of the revamp in general, the pond looks a lot better than it did a year ago - or it will do, once the council manages to sort the water out which has already turned an unsightly shade of bright algae green.

It is clear from social media that The Parade’s revamp is not to everybody’s taste, especially when it comes with a price tag of more than £4 million. However, I say again. It does look a lot better than it did. Previously, that part of the town was an eyesore - an embarrassment. The Parade was a rundown environment that just fed into stereotypes that Watford is a pokey little town in decline.

The refurbishment of The Parade is not a silver bullet and will not solve all the issues at the top of the town. Yet, following its revamp, it does look better - and, on balance, that can’t be a bad thing.

It doesn’t look like Watford is going to see an end to the saga over whether newly re-elected mayor Dorothy Thornhill will run for parliament or not any time soon.

The Lib Dems have said they are not due to announce their candidate for 2015 until September.

Meanwhile, there have been signs this week that the mayor is seriously considering making a bid for Westminster

Exhibit A was a press release from the Watford Lib Dems crowing about the latest Lord Ashcroft polling from marginal parliamentary seats. First off, seeing Liberal Democrats excited about any polling in these dark days of electoral gloom is noteworthy. Only a few weeks ago there was an abortive revolt against their perennially beleaguered leader Nick Clegg.

But the Watford branch has taken heart from the polling that shows the Lib Dems on 24 per cent, the Tories on 29 per cent, Labour on 25 per cent and UKIP on 16 per cent. This, they argue, is evidence Watford is still a "three horse race".

Although those results came when those polled were asked how they would vote just considering their local constituency.

But when they were asked how they would vote in a General Election tomorrow, the results made far less pleasant reading for the Lib Dems, who languish in fourth on 14 per cent behind UKIP on 20 per cent, Labour on 29 and the Tories on 31 per cent.

If the Lib Dems are to have a hope next May, they will need a candidate who can focus voters’ minds on local as well as national issues.

And it doesn’t take too much mental exertion to identify a candidate who fits that bill perfectly.

 

Comments (11)

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1:04pm Fri 27 Jun 14

davidhornet says...

Thanks Watford Observer for actually offering an original article. If we want twitter feeds from the police or the fire brigade we can find them ourselves. Bravo.
Thanks Watford Observer for actually offering an original article. If we want twitter feeds from the police or the fire brigade we can find them ourselves. Bravo. davidhornet
  • Score: 9

1:04pm Fri 27 Jun 14

TRT says...

Mate, you're in the WO offices... just go back into the archives and have a look at opinion on the 2001/2002 refit of the parade. I think you'll find a few letters to the editor about it. You'll always get a range of opinions, but do we really need to have these multi-million pound makeovers every dozen or so years? Can't we get better value for money than that?
And then go and grab a copy of Watford Through The Ages, or whatever it's called. There's an archive of pictures of the pond over the years. Now tell me when the pond looked at its best.
And then go and get a box set of "The Professionals" and check out "Killer With A Long Arm" - Diane Keen buying groceries from a supermarket on the Parade - it was a buzzing, vibrant place in the summer of 1977.
Time will tell if this space works or not, but it came with a heck of a price tag.
Mate, you're in the WO offices... just go back into the archives and have a look at opinion on the 2001/2002 refit of the parade. I think you'll find a few letters to the editor about it. You'll always get a range of opinions, but do we really need to have these multi-million pound makeovers every dozen or so years? Can't we get better value for money than that? And then go and grab a copy of Watford Through The Ages, or whatever it's called. There's an archive of pictures of the pond over the years. Now tell me when the pond looked at its best. And then go and get a box set of "The Professionals" and check out "Killer With A Long Arm" - Diane Keen buying groceries from a supermarket on the Parade - it was a buzzing, vibrant place in the summer of 1977. Time will tell if this space works or not, but it came with a heck of a price tag. TRT
  • Score: 5

1:11pm Fri 27 Jun 14

UkipTed says...

Lets get rid of the LIBLABCON and out of the EUSSR!

Ukip are going to cause an election earthquake at the next general election!



Ted
Lets get rid of the LIBLABCON and out of the EUSSR! Ukip are going to cause an election earthquake at the next general election! Ted UkipTed
  • Score: -1

1:18pm Fri 27 Jun 14

Hornets number 12 fan says...

TRT wrote:
Mate, you're in the WO offices... just go back into the archives and have a look at opinion on the 2001/2002 refit of the parade. I think you'll find a few letters to the editor about it. You'll always get a range of opinions, but do we really need to have these multi-million pound makeovers every dozen or so years? Can't we get better value for money than that?
And then go and grab a copy of Watford Through The Ages, or whatever it's called. There's an archive of pictures of the pond over the years. Now tell me when the pond looked at its best.
And then go and get a box set of "The Professionals" and check out "Killer With A Long Arm" - Diane Keen buying groceries from a supermarket on the Parade - it was a buzzing, vibrant place in the summer of 1977.
Time will tell if this space works or not, but it came with a heck of a price tag.
Funny you should mention this I found a lovely postcard of the pond on Ebay dated 1968 and it looked a fragrant and well kept area and the road was still around it. I think this was the best the pond looked and not the sterile concrete covered carbuncle it is now .
[quote][p][bold]TRT[/bold] wrote: Mate, you're in the WO offices... just go back into the archives and have a look at opinion on the 2001/2002 refit of the parade. I think you'll find a few letters to the editor about it. You'll always get a range of opinions, but do we really need to have these multi-million pound makeovers every dozen or so years? Can't we get better value for money than that? And then go and grab a copy of Watford Through The Ages, or whatever it's called. There's an archive of pictures of the pond over the years. Now tell me when the pond looked at its best. And then go and get a box set of "The Professionals" and check out "Killer With A Long Arm" - Diane Keen buying groceries from a supermarket on the Parade - it was a buzzing, vibrant place in the summer of 1977. Time will tell if this space works or not, but it came with a heck of a price tag.[/p][/quote]Funny you should mention this I found a lovely postcard of the pond on Ebay dated 1968 and it looked a fragrant and well kept area and the road was still around it. I think this was the best the pond looked and not the sterile concrete covered carbuncle it is now . Hornets number 12 fan
  • Score: 5

1:24pm Fri 27 Jun 14

Watfordengineer says...

UkipTed wrote:
Lets get rid of the LIBLABCON and out of the EUSSR!

Ukip are going to cause an election earthquake at the next general election!



Ted
UKIP ted,
What is the UKIP stance on the pond redevelopment?
Did too many eastern European works steal UK jobs to build it? Does the green algae represent the EU's climate change stance? or does the bridge pander to an alternative route in society similar to alternative lifestyles that you so oppose?
[quote][p][bold]UkipTed[/bold] wrote: Lets get rid of the LIBLABCON and out of the EUSSR! Ukip are going to cause an election earthquake at the next general election! Ted[/p][/quote]UKIP ted, What is the UKIP stance on the pond redevelopment? Did too many eastern European works steal UK jobs to build it? Does the green algae represent the EU's climate change stance? or does the bridge pander to an alternative route in society similar to alternative lifestyles that you so oppose? Watfordengineer
  • Score: 14

3:27pm Fri 27 Jun 14

Phil Cox (UKIP) says...

UkipTed wrote:
Lets get rid of the LIBLABCON and out of the EUSSR!

Ukip are going to cause an election earthquake at the next general election!



Ted
Let's get rid if UKIPTed.

Now, which of the LibLabCon parties is masquerading as UKIPTed?

Labour?

LibDems?

Tories?


How sad they have to stoop so low. They know their own policies are putting people off and driving people to UKIP, so now they are having to lie to try to put people off UKIP.

The polls show that the falsehoods of the likes of UKIPTed are not working. Why don't the other parties try the truth for a change? It's working rather well for UKIP, as the poll results show.
[quote][p][bold]UkipTed[/bold] wrote: Lets get rid of the LIBLABCON and out of the EUSSR! Ukip are going to cause an election earthquake at the next general election! Ted[/p][/quote]Let's get rid if UKIPTed. Now, which of the LibLabCon parties is masquerading as UKIPTed? Labour? LibDems? Tories? How sad they have to stoop so low. They know their own policies are putting people off and driving people to UKIP, so now they are having to lie to try to put people off UKIP. The polls show that the falsehoods of the likes of UKIPTed are not working. Why don't the other parties try the truth for a change? It's working rather well for UKIP, as the poll results show. Phil Cox (UKIP)
  • Score: -22

3:30pm Fri 27 Jun 14

Phil Cox (UKIP) says...

Hornets number 12 fan wrote:
TRT wrote:
Mate, you're in the WO offices... just go back into the archives and have a look at opinion on the 2001/2002 refit of the parade. I think you'll find a few letters to the editor about it. You'll always get a range of opinions, but do we really need to have these multi-million pound makeovers every dozen or so years? Can't we get better value for money than that?
And then go and grab a copy of Watford Through The Ages, or whatever it's called. There's an archive of pictures of the pond over the years. Now tell me when the pond looked at its best.
And then go and get a box set of "The Professionals" and check out "Killer With A Long Arm" - Diane Keen buying groceries from a supermarket on the Parade - it was a buzzing, vibrant place in the summer of 1977.
Time will tell if this space works or not, but it came with a heck of a price tag.
Funny you should mention this I found a lovely postcard of the pond on Ebay dated 1968 and it looked a fragrant and well kept area and the road was still around it. I think this was the best the pond looked and not the sterile concrete covered carbuncle it is now .
Old photos of the pond show what it could be.

Our new pond is not a patch on what it could be, or indeed was in its heyday.

For me, it shows a lack of vision and taste.
[quote][p][bold]Hornets number 12 fan[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]TRT[/bold] wrote: Mate, you're in the WO offices... just go back into the archives and have a look at opinion on the 2001/2002 refit of the parade. I think you'll find a few letters to the editor about it. You'll always get a range of opinions, but do we really need to have these multi-million pound makeovers every dozen or so years? Can't we get better value for money than that? And then go and grab a copy of Watford Through The Ages, or whatever it's called. There's an archive of pictures of the pond over the years. Now tell me when the pond looked at its best. And then go and get a box set of "The Professionals" and check out "Killer With A Long Arm" - Diane Keen buying groceries from a supermarket on the Parade - it was a buzzing, vibrant place in the summer of 1977. Time will tell if this space works or not, but it came with a heck of a price tag.[/p][/quote]Funny you should mention this I found a lovely postcard of the pond on Ebay dated 1968 and it looked a fragrant and well kept area and the road was still around it. I think this was the best the pond looked and not the sterile concrete covered carbuncle it is now .[/p][/quote]Old photos of the pond show what it could be. Our new pond is not a patch on what it could be, or indeed was in its heyday. For me, it shows a lack of vision and taste. Phil Cox (UKIP)
  • Score: -18

7:17am Sat 28 Jun 14

hessayon says...

i see they found the switch for the fairy lights which they leave on during the day.All they need to do now is find the switch for the pond pumps.
i see they found the switch for the fairy lights which they leave on during the day.All they need to do now is find the switch for the pond pumps. hessayon
  • Score: 12

10:36am Sat 28 Jun 14

LocalBoy1 says...

Mike, you have excelled today. "I find them an efficient and inoffensive method of traversing aquatic obstacles". Good Lord..... A £4/5 million waste, a green pond with a bridge to nowhere. Well done Lib Dems/Dotty. "We are not amused"
Mike, you have excelled today. "I find them an efficient and inoffensive method of traversing aquatic obstacles". Good Lord..... A £4/5 million waste, a green pond with a bridge to nowhere. Well done Lib Dems/Dotty. "We are not amused" LocalBoy1
  • Score: -14

7:56pm Sat 28 Jun 14

Wacko Jacko says...

If like me you've taken a break from the footy or wombledon and walked into the Parade to enjoy the Image Watford festival, you'll have noticed that the new paved areas, the pond and the bridge have been well used by several of the acts, who previously used to fight for supremacy with the cycle lanes. Ignore the naysayers, I've seen lots of pedestrians using the bridge as it creates a natural line between the underpass and Sainsburys, Oceana etc. on that side of the Parade. As for the costs, yes it's a lot of money, but we've got a big improvement in return and remember the works include all the paving between Rickmansworth Road and Clarendon Road, plus the pond, the bridge and the new street furniture and lighting. Creating a much improved town and boosting it's status as a cultural centre looks like good value to me.
If like me you've taken a break from the footy or wombledon and walked into the Parade to enjoy the Image Watford festival, you'll have noticed that the new paved areas, the pond and the bridge have been well used by several of the acts, who previously used to fight for supremacy with the cycle lanes. Ignore the naysayers, I've seen lots of pedestrians using the bridge as it creates a natural line between the underpass and Sainsburys, Oceana etc. on that side of the Parade. As for the costs, yes it's a lot of money, but we've got a big improvement in return and remember the works include all the paving between Rickmansworth Road and Clarendon Road, plus the pond, the bridge and the new street furniture and lighting. Creating a much improved town and boosting it's status as a cultural centre looks like good value to me. Wacko Jacko
  • Score: -1

9:40pm Sat 28 Jun 14

UAFhornet says...

I agree with Wacko Jacko I think it looks good..

Phil Cox and his UKIP pal Ted are so negative, Cox lost big style and should put a sock in it.

Knocked out first round Phil, get the message mate x
I agree with Wacko Jacko I think it looks good.. Phil Cox and his UKIP pal Ted are so negative, Cox lost big style and should put a sock in it. Knocked out first round Phil, get the message mate x UAFhornet
  • Score: 3

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