Concern over Market & Car park site development - Northmonster?

An outline planning application has been submitted, 21/01151/R4OUT, for the redevelopment of themarket and former multi-storey car park site at Northminster. The applicant, PIP (Northminster) Ltd, is part of the Peterborough Investment Partnership, a joint venture company consisting of the City Council and its partner IAGH3. It proposes a 12 and 11 storey residential block in an ‘H’ plan shape containing up to 335 units plus two ground floor commercial units fronting onto a reconfigured Laxton Square. There would be only 50 on site car parking spaces and a single vehicular access to the car park from Northminster Road. It is stated that all the units will be social/affordable/intermediate rent with no indication of sizes given although the attendant Design & Access Statement does indicate a mix of 1 to 3 bed apartments. None of the 335 residential units will ‘Market Housing’.

We were consulted on the proposal before the application was submitted and some minortweaks have been made as a result. However, our major concerns remain unresolved and centre around thefuture of the market, scale of the scheme, the effect on Cathedral views and the inadequacy of car parking.

Please see our very detailed response and objection to 21/01151/R4OUT by following the link, and it is also mentioned in our Newsletter, edition September 2021.

Peterborough and its Villages - our Heritage at Risk

Henry Mansell Duckett, author of our much praised book 'Peterborough and its Villages in Detail', has submitted a personal letter and essay to Peterborough Telegraph on the subject of our Heritage at Risk, follow the link to see his full letter and essay.

Nene photo project 2021

This is intended to be a photographic record of the river Nene during 2021, to which our members along with members of the public are invited to submit contributions. To get more information, requirements and conditions, and how you can contribute please follow the link Nene photo project 2021.

It will include views of the river, views of buildings and land from the river banks, and views from boats on the river. The project will provide a context for any proposed developments close to the river and impacting on views of and from the river. It will also be an historical archive and a resource for promotion of Peterborough.

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Our vision for a better Embankment area

Please read our Peterborough Telegraph article written by Kem Mehmed about our vision for a brighter, better Embankment area and the step by step guide on how to get it.

Fletton Quays

All matters relating to Fletton Quays can now be found on our planning applications page.

Peterborough Town Investment Plan Bid

Please read the Peterborough Telegraph article written by committee member Kem Mehmed about this important document and its significance for the future development of the city.

Westgate Market Hall - a proposal

The content that was here has now been moved to a dedicated page Westgate Market Hall.

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The adopted Peterborough Local Plan

Read our views and find out more on the Peterborough Local Plan by following the link.

Canary Cottage saved for posterity

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Canary Cottage, Knarr Farm, Thorney has been given Grade II listed status by the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, on the advice of Historic England who have labelled it a time capsule, showing what Fenland gricultural life was like.

This iconic eye catching structure with its yellow door and window frames stands in the flat Fenland fields, visible from the A47 on the way to Thorney.

It is a rare mid-18th century thatched relic gained the name ‘Canary Cottage’ in the early 20th century, when the owners the Dixon-Spain family colour-coded their buildings. The L-shaped cottage housed farm workers for over 250 years, offering basic living conditions, complete with an outside toilet, open fire, mains water and a gas powered water heater.

It is pleasing to know that the current owners, Dalton Seeds will ensure its preservation.

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Peterborough in Detail Greetings Cards

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Peterborough Civic Society have created these lovely cards using photographs taken during the preparation of our acclaimed book, 'Peterborough and its Villages in Detail'. They are for sale via our
for sales page where they can be viewed full size.

The Society took up this challenge following a call from our Committee that we should take further steps to support our wonderful Cathedral. Once the production costs of the cards have been covered, all profits will be donated to the Cathedral to assist with the maintenance of its fabric.

The collages have been prepared by our vice-chairman, Toby Wood. We would like to acknowledge the support given by the Peterborough Photographic Society and Fisherprint Ltd. in their realisation.


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Will Serpentine Green shopping centre expansion damage the City Centre? - press release

The proposals to upgrade and extend the Serpentine Green shopping centre have been enthusiastically welcomed by 800 or so people who visited an exhibition held recently in Hampton. The plans include additional shops, a large unit for leisure uses, an outdoor town square and a decked car park. The prospect of leisure uses appears to have grabbed the public attention and top of he list was a swimming pool, with a bowling alley, indoor skiing and a climbing wall also favoured.

The scheme is said to cost £45 million and will create hundreds of construction and permanent jobs. So what's not to like? For residents of Hampton and its neighbours, the answer is; very little. The difficulty comes when we look at the wider impact of such a large expansion of a district centre on the city centre and the other district centre nearby at Ortongate. Will this proposal damage the viability and vitality of these two?

Ortongate is in a sorry state the causes being many fold and a mystery to most of us. One thing for certain is that its lack of success in attracting retailers to fill its empty buildings can be put down to competition from Serpentine Green. Adding to the retail and leisure offer of Serpentine Green will set back the recovery of Ortongate a number of years.

The city centre is also not in the best of health in shopping terms. In 2015 when planning permission for the extensions to Serpentine Green, currently under construction, was applied for the assessment of the City Council planners was that the centre was too big for the population it served and that any increase in retail space might be detrimental to the city centre. On balance it was not considered serious enough to justify a refusal, bearing in mind the buoyant state of shopping in the city centre at the time. There has been a good deal of activity since then. Many shops have changed hands and many have been converted to restaurants. Queensgate has planning permission to; remodel one of the malls, slightly increase retail space, install a food court and a multi screen cinema. Their approval has almost certainly damaged the likelihood of a much needed regeneration of North Westgate based on a strikingly similar contents list.

We live in unpredictable times where some stability and continuity in planning of our shopping and social infrastructure is needed. Any proposals which divert investment in shops, social and leisure facilities from the city centre should be resisted in the interests of maintaining and improving a city centre in which we can be proud.

What may be best for Hampton may not be best for the city as a whole.

Kem Mehmed 18th July 2017.
On behalf of the Peterborough Civic Society committee.

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The Story of RAF Peterborough (Westwood)

The Civic Society secured a grant from the Local Heritage Initiative (part of the Heritage Lottery Fund) to produce a DVD and teachers resource pack featuring the story of Westwood Airfield (known as RAF Peterborough in the 1930s and WW2). Local film company, Blue Slate media, have produced the DVD and the Heritage Education team at Peterborough Museum have produced the teachers’ pack.

The Society was particularly keen to record, through interviews, the stories of people who served at Westwood, as well as recording on film the few remaining airfield buildings before they are lost. The DVD also sets the airfield in the wider context of the war experience of Peterborough and European events through the use of archive film from local and national sources. Copies of the DVD can be purchased through the Society by following this
link, or can be purchased at our open meetings please see our programme page for the date and venue of the next meeting.

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page last changed 4 September 2021 including review by Toby.