Stirchley news! S106
“Planning obligations under Section 106 of the Town and Country Planning Act 1990 (as amended), commonly known as S106 agreements, are a mechanism which make a development proposal acceptable in planning terms, that would not otherwise be acceptable. They are focused on site specific mitigation of the impact of development. S106 agreements are often referred to as 'developer contributions’.” https://www.local.gov.uk/pas/pas-topics/infrastructure/s106-obligations-overview
A potted history which sets the scene: there is £127,000 Section 106 money available for high street improvements in Stirchley from Tesco, this has come from a development that didn’t actually go ahead, but Stirchley still gets the money. This is the land now owned by Seven Capital. The money has to be spent by 2023. There was £177k to begin with, and £50k went to Stirchley Library for urgent repairs to the roof and for asbestos removal.
A local trader-resident group has requested £110,000 of the remaining funds to develop projects in the area. They have put forward a statement of intent which you can read linked below. There will be future S106 money because that’s how it works, but their proposal is to do with the Tesco monies. They publicised these on Weds 26th June, and are seeking comments by 23rd July which isn’t very long and the plans don’t offer a breakdown of costs, apparently that is the next stage……
I attended meetings in 2015/16 about this money and remember the £50k being agreed for the library, however these particular s106 meetings stopped, and I had assumed the rest of the money wasn’t available any more.
Now is the opportunity for public consultation and residents, traders, community groups ought to have a read through their proposals, the parameters of what the S106 can be spent on, and make their suggestions. The parameters of the funding is that it needs to be spent on environmental works / public realm improvements. Such as: bicycle parking / street furniture yes, cctv, no (as far as I’m aware).
I think it’s worth generally having a think about what improvements you’d like to see in the area - and suggesting them - because even if something doesn’t fit within the remit of the s106 there’s still some passionate and dedicated people in the area who want to see positive change - and, Mary Locke, local cllr, is developing a ‘Stirchley Ward Plan’, and it’s worth documenting this sort of thing. Outside of both of these official routes (s106, Ward plan), it’s absolutely worth having a community-led vision for Stirchley.
Short term - please tell local businesses who might not know about this so they can actively take part. Because the money has to be spent on the high street the StWF are focussing on local businesses’ opinions but the high street is nothing without its residents and visitors.
Thinking long term - I’d like to see a community planning day so that people who aren’t just on social media can offer their ideas and participate in a ‘Stirchley manifesto’ of sorts - anyone else? You can @ me on twitter as @greenstirchley or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Below are my v brief list of ideas but I’ll spend a bit more time next week writing more about this and unpicking it.
In the StWF proposal/SoI it says that there was public consultation and I am keen to read the responses to these that led to the themes that were chosen as what they want to spend the money on. There needs to be a place online / a way to document peoples comments on this publicly so that we can see a general consensus and to build on this work. I’ve asked Mick Jones who runs Stirchley.co.uk / Stirchley Forum if we can use that (will update this when it’s set up!) http://stirchley.co.uk/onlineforum/index.php?PHPSESSID=qnqr1n86ks42oqt7m6sjc5f8t6&
StWF have said they are open to hearing ideas.
What are Stirchley’s wider problems, what can be covered in s106 - what extends outside of S106?
My ideas in no particular order:
Recycling bins on Stirchley High Street
Community compost area
Turn roundabout near co-op into wildflowers / meadow rather than concrete
Create a bee/pollinator pathway through Stirchley - planters, window boxes, hanging baskets off lamp posts
Picnic benches outside old district office / more seating along the high street
A crossing outside Stirchley Baths / by the Stirchley Church
Bicycle parking outside Cork and Cage / Alicias, and outside Artefact - this could be one of those on street bike park car spaces (pictured above)
Trees on high street
Farmfoods fence to be lowered so Stirchley Park can be seen from Pershore Road
Stirchley Baths / Library / Park community garden area
Better wayfinding from Bournville Station route directing people from the station to Stirchley (also highlighting where Cotteridge Park is)
and not s106 related:
A 'Library of Things' / repair shop set up
A zero waste food shop - Stirchley Stores 2.0
Bicycle lane down Pershore Road
Stirchley Shed project (like Shed movement)
Feeling safe in Stirchley
Clean Air monitoring - on and before/after the Half Marathon
Active streets - street festival
The end of my sunny day brain dump!