The people of Bromsgrove are up in arms about a proposed new building within the town and in my view they are right. Now don't get me wrong - yes in my last blog I enthusied about the changes and developments in Birmingham, most of them set in shiney new futuristic buildings - but that was different.
It was different for a variety of reasons. First and foremost, was that in Birmingham, they strove to build interest and aesthetics into the new archetecture. Yes, the buildings are primarily construted of steel and glass, as is the proposed one in Bromsgrove, but there are curves and angles, quirks of design and embellishments, which make them oddly in keeping with the older, original buildings they are set around.
Then there are the purposes of the buildings themselves. In Birmingham they contain flashy shops and fancy restaurants as befiting a large city centre. Their consumers are on the whole, suited-up business people, taking a quick break out of their hectic lifestyles.
Not so in Bromsgrove. Yes we have office workers and bank managers but take a look around you the next time you are in the town centre. Are those the people milling around the High Street? Bromsgrove planners certainly seem to think so.
I beg to differ. The shoppers, the browsers, the consumers of the High Street are a vastly different crowd to those in Birmingham. There are harrassed mothers with often fractious children, older, semi-retired couples and lots of school children, especially in the lunch hour and after half past three.
For all our expensive housing and two-car households in Bromsgrove, we are not an 'Executive Town'. We are a town made up of people who don suits and shirts to do a job and who are quite happy to leave that finery behind, when we leave the workplace.
But unfortunately we have overlooked something. We think that because we live here, our chidren attend schools here and especially because it is here we pay our council taxes, we have the right to oppose changes to our town. You see, that is the crux of the matter. It is not our town. We may be belong to Bromsgrove but it certainly does not belong to us. If you think differently, ask any Bromsgrove town official...