Aylesbury town centre looking 'sad and rundown' says resident calling on authorities to 'do better'

Aylesbury resident David Pooley has shared his thoughts on our 'run down' town centre

David writes:

Dear Sir/Madam

Despite the "Garden Town" propaganda (who dreamt that up?) it is a sad fact that parts of Aylesbury town centre are looking extremely run down.

Walking from Buckingham Road to Friars Square this morning my route took me along New Street past an unattractive used car dealership and the two very large and extremely unsightly derelict office buildings which were abandoned several years ago and have been boarded up ever since.

I continued along Cambridge Place into the dirty alleyway and bin storage area - not a very appealing area for a restaurant entrance - and headed for Kingsbury.

It's hard to believe how much money was spent on this area a few years ago. As an attempt at a continental-style town square (or triangle) it has failed miserably, and is basically a large, barren, unattractive area with most of the paving slabs uneven or broken.

The cobbled road through Kingsbury is in a terrible condition and there seems to be a permanent flood on the bend near the Market Square end. How long does it take to fix a drainage problem?

Some of the other roads in town are also in a suspension-battering condition.

Walton Road by the Grammar School is particularly bad, along with parts of the Gyratory system. The dangerous "temporary" bridge on Stoke Road with no footpath on the south side should have been replaced by a proper bridge many years ago.

The road surface between the bridge and the Gyratory system appears to have suffered tornado damage, although I can't recollect that particular weather phenomenon affecting this area.

I think the last time I saw a road being repaired was in on a visit to Germany a couple of years ago. Come on, council! Surely you can do better than this......can't you?

Yours sincerely

David Pooley

Eden Close

In response to this, Buckinghamshire Council said:

"The council is committed to improving the town centre, with its enhancement and regeneration a priority in the Aylesbury Garden Town Masterplan. This builds on the major investment in recent years which has seen the opening of the new theatre, canal basement area and the new restaurants, apartments and public space in The Exchange.

"The Garden Town initiative aims to make the town centre more attractive and vibrant for visitors, shoppers and workers, and as part of this programme, a planning application is due to be submitted in the summer to improve both Market Square and Kingsbury. The emerging concept for Kingsbury is to create a garden as a focal point, with the pedestrianisation of both spaces also a priority. Further plans to enhance the town centre will be developed over the coming year.

"Unfortunately, some of the neglected buildings referred to are not owned by the council. However, we are working hard to involve landlords and businesses in the plans for the town centre and encourage them to improve their properties where this is needed."

A spokesperson from Transport for Buckinghamshire commented:

"Walton Road and the section of the gyratory up to the temporary bridge is set to be repaired this financial year. Transport for Buckinghamshire (TfB) has approximately £15 million a year for carriageway improvement works. Just under half of this goes towards local roads, including carriageways and footways. This budget does not provide the capacity to repair every road in the county, but TfB does have a process for selecting which roads which need to be treated as a priority, including a Value for Money assessment."

What do you think?

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