Tram Blights The Square – Beeston Closes

Beeston closes: The Tram has blighted the shopping area in the Square. As we all know, Wilkinsons closed on 14 April 2012 but, as these photographs show, a large number of other shop units are either empty or will shortly be empty. You can find more pictures in the Tram Route Photographs.

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39 Responses to Tram Blights The Square – Beeston Closes

  1. Rick P says:

    I fear this is only the start. Beeston will be a no go area for many months. Following the publication of your photographs and comments from Barry Morrison, it strikes me the only people who actually want this tram are councillors who will never use it and probably Tesco who think it might ferry in a few more badly needed customers. The employment it was supposedly bringing to the area is only temporary and so far has been cancelled out by job losses at Wilkos and other businesses forced to close. It does make you wonder if there will be any actual benefits to this and the park and ride or will it just add to the congestion and the loss of valuable green spaces and make this borough so built up that it will just become unrecognisable.

  2. Sue S says:

    Let’s also remember the work car park levy (my husband and I are both having to pay to our employers) which is contributing to the cost of the tram that we won’t be able to use! Beeston used to be a lovely shopping town. I’m finding it hard to believe this is progress.

  3. B Wand says:

    Are you people for real? The tram has not blighted the square. Beeston is being provided with a modern light rapid transit system that is good for business and good for the travelling public. Surely you people can not be so short sighted.

    • Steve Austin says:

      Do take the trouble to look at the photographs at The Square is a shambles and there is little certainty that things will improve once the Tram work is complete. A very poorly planned programme as far as this section of the route is concerned!

      • Derek C says:

        The Square has been a shambles for many a year, whatever happens there can only be to the benefit of Beeston rather than that dated monstrosity which was way past its “sell by date”.

  4. Barry Morrison says:

    If I can repeat what I said some time ago about the tram which was supposed to bring business and employment to Radford and Hyson Green, it did’nt work nor do I suspect will it work in Beeston.

    • Rick P says:

      On looking at the route and knowing the speed they travel, it should take twice as long to get into the centre of Nottingham, than any of the direct route buses. So that makes sense doesn’t it, or are we having the bus lanes back to slow the buses down.

  5. Barry Morrison says:

    The trouble is Derek, as I understand it….2 seperate tracks will be laid for the tram…The buses will also be using the area so that’s not going to leave much room for redevelopment unless you go skywards and I can’t see that happening…So it begs the question…’Who’s going to invest in what already seems a lost cause’?

  6. David Watts says:

    Barry, the area to be redeveloped potentially includes the whole of the existing Square, which as others have said is desperately in need of modernisation, together with the current bus station, the multi storey car park site and the fire station site. How much room do you want? David

  7. Barry Morrison says:

    It’s not how much room I want…It’s a fact that most of the vacant space when the car park etc is demolished will be taken up by double tram lines and bus stops….As for the rest of the square…well who’s going to invest when they’ve seen what happened to shops in the last 30 years….They’ve come and gone for a variety of reasons such as high rents and business rates and not got the return they initially envisaged so why should they invest in Beeston?. Then of course there’s the present economic climate which is going to take years to get back to what we call normality, if it ever does. The bottom line is.. you need people with jobs to spend money to get out of recession and help business and at the moment and for the foreseeable future nobody seems to have a clue as to how to create jobs, and those without jobs have’nt got a cat in hell’s chance of earning money so they’ll have none to spend…and please don’t give me that old mantra about the tram bringing business and jobs to Beeston because it won’t.

    • David Watts says:

      Well, seen as you seem to be admitting that your mind is closed to debate or to other points of view I won’t bother trying to argue with you.

  8. Barry Morrison says:

    Where was the debate on the tram before it was imposed on Beeston.?..Where was the debate on closing Wilko’s and who says Beeston Square is an eyesore?…I admit it could do with a bit of tarting up but not much more

  9. Gail B says:

    Who is Derek C. Does he work for the council? We only have one major company in Beeston now, which is Boots. Doesn’t he care about the elderly, who have been forced out of their care home in Lower Road. We don’t have many shops in Beeston now, as it is. Once the tram arrives here, there will be even less shops. It will be like visiting a wasteland. Who is going to stop here and shop, I thought we were going enviromentally friendly, the trams need electric don’t they.? What about the eco buses. We would not have to knock down buildings or disrupt any water/gas mains etc. Shame on those who don’t care about the enviroment and the elderly. What a society we are living in.

    Gail B

  10. David Watts says:

    Out of interest I walked the whole length of Beeston High Road today. There are only four closed shops on the whole road. The mix of other shops probably isn’t what people may prefer but the Business Improvement District team are doing a very good job in ensuring that units are occupied, which is to everyone’s benefit.

  11. Dr. Richard Heade says:

    Hmm, sorry, Mr.Watts, but, even though various commercial buildings and properties may be occupied, they aren’t ideal for everyone’s consumer spending. We aren’t all interested in Gold exchange/selling cheap shops, charity shops, DVD rental premises, Cheque and Cash Converter stores, Pizzarias, Restaurants and Pubs, et al. I don’t know how old you are but as a man, we have never had a Gentleman’s shop for Beeston, Chilwell, or, Attenborough residents, since Victor Oades, and then Burton’s Gentleman’s Outfitters, came and went. Popping in to the only shop in Beeston now selling Men’s apparel, Peacocks, last week, did nothing for my wants, a very poor choice and cheap prices being my two major niggles, so, not even having a proper Gentleman’s outfitters shop in Beeston, something which we have been screaming out for for decades, is certainly not a contender for my doing any personal shopping in Beeston on a regular basis, so, cheap and tacky businesses may thrive in Beeston, along with the buskers and Big Issue sellers, but, attracting shops, it most certainly isn’t, and as the open air market has now closed on Fridays and Saturdays, it only goes to prove that people are not doing any shopping in Beeston any more and I hardly think the new tram network will resurrect consumer spending in the future.

    • Gail B says:

      I totally agree with you on this matter, about the trams and the tacky businesses. What will the council do next. Are they going to sell the other side of the market to build houses. What I wonder is, what happens to the money they make from this. Could it be spent on our community services. I am only in my 30’s myself, I wouldn’t visit Beeston if I didn’t have to, even though I was born there. I only come to Beeston to see my mum.

    • David Watts says:

      Richard, I totally agree that the mix of shops isn’t what we would want and this is one of the reasons that the modernisation of the Square is so important. One thing that we have found repeatedly is retailers telling us that the shop units aren’t the right size for modern trade, and until this is sorted we will struggle to attract the shops that we need. However I think you are forgetting about Greenwoods who were a gents outfitter in Beeston until a couple of years ago, and of course Tesco do sell gents clothes. I’m not saying that this solves the problem, it doesn’t, but surely having occupied shops is far better than having boarded up shops. David

  12. Barry Morrison says:

    And if I recall correctly, four of those businesses on the High Road were moved from Beeston Square so it’s nothing new…Just replacement….And of course Clinton Cards will soon be closing down.

  13. Gail B says:

    We have two churches, Chilwell High Road and the Parish Church next to Wilkinson’s that was. What a mess, when you go to church now all you will see is overhead cables for the trams. What about the people who are buried in this churchyard? No, I am not a church goer but surely if the deceased could speak, they would not want this either. I think it is totally disrespectful, even when you are dead you still can’t rest in peace.

    Gail B

    • Adrian H says:

      If the deceased could speak, I think their first comment would be thanks to the Council for tidying up the headstones and regularly cutting the grass. One or two might also be hoping that continual investment in public transport such as the tram will encourage a minority of the current flock of parishioners to desist from parking on the graves for Sunday worship and either leave their cars at home or at least reflect on the true values of being a little more respectful of the dead. Not sure what the current generation of the living dead are trying to argue if they don’t want modern shops and public transport as agreed in the customary manner at the ballot box.

  14. David Watts says:

    I am a Methodist local preacher and frankly don’t think that the dead will be greatly troubled by the presence of a tram cable. You really are scraping the barrel in terms of weak arguments with this one.

  15. Steve Barber says:

    Reading these comments I find it incredible that so many people seem to be so badly informed. Where was the debate? Where have you been for the last 10 years? Most of the Square will be taken up by tram tracks – simply not true, the multi-storey and the fire station will add hugely to the available area for development. No sign of things improving – so an extra 5m plus passing customers through the middle of our town won’t increase trade? The trams will take longer than the buses; again not true, the tram will be 70% on its own formation away from traffic and will be 99.5% reliable (as proved by phase 1) 19 minutes from Beeston Square to the Market Square. No-one wants the tram; in the only professional opinion poll, 66% wanted the Chilwell line and 75% the Clifton line.

    Sorry but all the arguments expressed on this site were all fully investigated and aired in the 7 week public inquiry which was later re-opened. The inspectors comments were completely in favour of the tram which will be a catalyst to revival for a very run down Square (which has been deteriorating for years).

    Sadly the negative comments are doing nothing but talking the town down to the potential retailers we are trying to attract.

  16. Barry Morrison says:

    Steve…All I can do is to reiterate what I’ve already said twice…And that is exactly what was said 10 years ago regarding Radford and Hyson Green….It did’nt work and you can’t justify expense of this magnitude on tram passengers only

  17. Steve Barber says:

    Sorry Barry but we differ in views here. I work in Bulwell and although not the West Bridgford of Greater Nottingham (it never was) it has worked there. In Hucknall the row is about where they don’t want houses built because people now want to live there. They didn’t pre-tram and post pit closure.

    The inspectors comments at the the Public Inquiry, after he’d spent 7 weeks listening to all evidence are most interesting.

  18. Mike Johnson says:

    I worked for a few years in the Hyson Green Area and believe the Tram has helped to regenerate the business community in the Area.

  19. Barry Morrison says:

    It does’nt Mike and it has’nt happened. The tramline has been good for passengers…I’ve never disputed that and I’ve no doubt the tram to Beeston and Chilwell will be good for passengers but to say the tram has regenerated the business community is a fallacy and I say that from friends , family and business connections in the area…Just look at the unemployment problem in Radford & Hyson Green…It’s massive….There are a lot of shops in this area but most are family owned and run so there’s no chance of employment being offered to anybody…and the way the tram is routed it goes round the back of The Green and Radford so how can you say it was ever designed to attract business?

  20. Barry Morrison says:

    I find Steve Barbers comments a little confusing..Where was the debate he says?..and where have you been for the last ten years? To answer a question with a question is non-definitive and not informative. When did the council ever ask anybody in Beeston and surrounding areas if they wanted the tram?..They did’nt Steve.
    Although Broxtowe are not responsible for the WPL, nobody has answered questions asked by people who work in Nottingham and will never use the tram why they have to pay the said tax.
    Then he says an extra 5 million passing customers through our town…I’m afraid that’s exactly what it will be…Passing through on their way to Nottingham town centre.
    Now to quote your last sentence Steve…’Sadly the negative comments are doing nothing but talking the town down to the potential retailers we are trying to attract’..The council has let Beeston rot for over 30 years now…,Councillors have never listened to the people of Beeston and never will.

  21. David Watts says:

    But Barry, you don’t live in Beeston so how do you claim to know what the council have done with residents there. This sort of completely inaccurate negativity really doesn’t help the debate.

  22. Barry Morrison says:

    Does’nt answer the question

  23. Barry Morrison says:

    David, you’re right…I don’t live in Beeston anymore but I know an awful lot of people in Beeston who frequently tell me they did’nt want the tram…Have never been asked their opinions on it and often wonder who were involved in the so called exhaustive consultations which they knew nothing about. They and most of us are the ones who have lost a couple of good reasonably priced shops which we used a lot which the two main supermarkets in the area have capitalised on big time and who have now got to put up with the mess which is developing from Beeston all the way to Abbey Bridge in Lenton for the next two years at least.

  24. M Blair says:

    I believe you made a comment about the lady, Gail B. Saying she is scraping the barrel, regarding the tram passing the parish church in Beeston. i.e, stating i’m sure the deceased wouldn’t mind. I believe you are a preacher, so I find this rather strange, the government are alway’s going on about the good society we need. When somebody shows they truly care, I find your comments rather offensive, from a political party who’s done more u-turns then our roads have. In hard times today, when people are struggling to feed their families, and more public services are being cut. That’s what you call scraping the barrel. Do you really read through most of the people’s comments on the Bramcote Today site. Because the majority of people, do not want the trams. We have a brilliant bus service in Beeston, I was born here, and lived most of my life there. I like progress, if it benefits everyone in the future. There is nothing in Beeston/ Chilwell. So people will be staying onboard the tram, going straight through to Nottingham. I’m sure the trams are not that enviromentally friendly, because we need to make electric for these to work, i.e powerstations. Surely the buses do the same job?

    Michael B

  25. David Watts says:

    Michael, your arguments were all considered by the independent inspector at the lengthy public inquiry and all rejected. I can’t agree that we have a brilliant bus service. I receive more emails about poor bus services than probably any other issue, certainly far more than from people who say that they don’t want the tram. Gail’s argument was, I’m afraid, an absolutely pointless one with no merit to it whatsoever. She can’t know what the deceased would want any more than I can, but I do know that most local residents want a thriving and prosperous town centre in Beeston, because that’s what they tell me. The investment that we are putting in place now will provide that.

    • Gail B says:

      Mr Watts, Firstly I believe you stated the deceased wouldn’t mind the trams. What about the relatives who visit the deceased’s graves? You stated in your last comment the investment you are putting into the trams, but you are not. It comes from Nottingham City Council and partly from the working parking levy, which nobody wanted. I believe the government withdrew their £28m… Let’s just see what happens next, we are paying for the olympics which has already cost us more than we first thought. I love sport, and it keeps people healthy. But surely there should be a limit. Are the government going to come clean on this, how much will it really cost us? What about public services which are being cut to the bone.

  26. Peter Chatfield, says:

    I am surprised that David Watts gets more emails about poor bus services than any other issues. Being associated with buses from 1957 until 2001 I would suggest that Beeston, Bramcote and Stapleford have better bus services than at any other time in that period. In 1957 through Bramcote to Nottingham there were two competing bus companies giving a 15 minute headway, ie 4 buses an hour. This increased over the years to a 10 minute headway (6 buses an hour) until today when there are 10 buses an hour. The service to Beeston is during the day still every half hour but we have lost buses to Bulwell and evening buses to Beeston. In fact in the current public transport survey I have suggested that the next to last bus (18) from Nottingham to Beeston is extended to Stapleford.
    As far as Beeston is concerned, there used to be a bus every half hour between Inham Nook and Nottingham. Now there are 12 buses an hour. Bartons ran every 15 minutes to Derby, every hour to Castle Donington, every hour to Loughborough and once every two hours to Coalville. That gave 7/8 buses an hour to Long Eaton compared with 10 an hour today.
    There are 4 buses an hour in each direction through Ewe Lamb Lane when there was only one in 1957
    From Beeston there are buses to Keyworth every hour completely new. From Beeston bus station there are over 20 buses an hour to Nottingham with a comparison of 8/9 Barton and four NCT in 1957.
    Admittedly there are less evening buses but Sunday is better served than previously.

  27. Barry Morrison says:

    I’m not sure about David Watt’s statement on emails regarding buses as I reckon Beeston must have one of the best bus services anywhere in the Nottingham area.
    As Peter says the service to and from Bramcote is non existent after 7pm. Other than that there can’t be many complaints, certainly not on the amount of buses serving the area.

  28. Barry Morrison says:

    And if it’s true that David gets complaints about poor bus services, what have they got to complain about if Peter’s figures on bus services are correct which I don’t doubt at all? Some people are never satisfied

  29. J Archer says:

    While Line 1 hasn’t done much to improve Hyson Green, it has made a massive difference to the investment in places like Bulwell and Hucknall, which are more comparable to Beeston.
    The trams to town will be significantly quicker than the buses, move far more passengers at once and are much better for the environment.

  30. Pingback: R.I.P. Beeston | Bramcote Today

  31. Rachel B says:

    What is wrong with the bus services we already have?? They run regularly and if they break down we can get on the next bus which would be about 5 mins or less. If the tram breaks down, what do we do? If for instance, a road is closed due to a fire etc? Where would the tram go as buses can easily follow a diversion.

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