Eldene Wishlist

Mulling over what I would change about Eldene if I could click my fingers, here is a quick list. This doubles as a list of projects that I would want to move forward if elected – not much is in direct Parish control, but part of being an elected representative is trying to influence the people or bodies that can decide things!

Quick list here, then more information below…

  1. Parking
  2. Eldene Drive path
  3. Eldene Centre
  4. Access to Morrison’s from Meads
  5. Parish Council communication
  6. Public transport links
  7. Events
  8. NEL Website further progress
  9. Support of local issues
  10. Interaction with local businesses
  11. Traffic calming

A straw poll of residents suggests that parking is the number one issue locally.  This causes traffic problems and damages the grass as well as being frustrating when people can’t find somewhere to park. 

The causes are fairly well documented, and are to do with a lack of decent public transport and more cars per household than there used to be, as well as more vehicles for home working than when the estate was designed.  The solutions are harder to implement!  I talk about public transport below, but equally it may be that there is a good case for creating more parking, and it is certainly something that the Parish Council should have in the back of its mind when discussing how to improve the area, which should probably be one of its reasons for being.

Eldene Drive Path

This may be a personal one, but it has always seemed odd to me that the path around the North of Eldene Drive stops where it does, instead of carrying on round to Morrison’s, as shown in the blue line below (M for Morrison’s).  I would want to take this forward in terms of costing it and seeing if it’s possible to do.

Eldene Centre

In an ideal view of the world, the newly turfed Eldene beach, the school, the Crumpled Horn and the Community Centre would be working together to make Eldene Centre a proper beating heart of the area, and would love to see a working group set up to make this happen.  Very happy to acknowledge that this sort of relationship might already exist, in which case some of the other items on the list might be easy to implement!

Access to Morrison’s from Meads

It has always seemed strange to me that there is no obvious route to get to Morrison’s if you are at the square in the centre of the Meads.  There are pretty much 3 options, shown in the graphic below.

The red route is the most pedestrian friendly, and it involves walking towards the underpass and crossing by the bus stop.  The blue route is another option, which involves walking along Stubsmead, which has a significant parking problem and very little good pedestrian routes.  The black route means going through the houses and then crossing over a patch of grass.  I believe the black route was not paved when Morrison’s was built so that it did not encourage people to take this route past the row of houses, but it is one of thos situations where people do it anyway, so a better solution is probably needed.  One to think about, anyway!

Parish Council Communication

As a keen Facebook user, it seems very strange to me that the Parish Council does not have its own Facebook page.  The main effect of this is that the Chair gets tagged personally on Facebook whenever someone wants to flag something to the Parish Council (e.g. fly tipping), and also that Parish Council communication comes out through an individual’s Facebook account (usually the Chair’s).  This does mean that the Parish seems to be represented by one person (the Chair) rather than being a collective of nine people, which does not seem very healthy.

Public Transport links

The two main bus problems are the lack of a direct bus to Old Town and a direct bus to the Hospital.  It would be great to keep pushing for these important transport links to be put into place – obviously not under direct control, but a nice to have!


Connected to the Eldene Centre being a hub, it would be great to have things like summer gatherings, jumble sales, that sort of thing.  Definitely one that the Parish Council can help organise!

NEL Website further development

The parish website has just had a redesign and is looking great, so the Council and the Clerk should use it in conjunction with social media to get parish information out as much as possible, to build engagement with the Parish Council.

Support of Local Issues

The big one at the moment is Charles MacPherson Gardens Wardens, but there will always be specific issues that Parish Councillors can support with.  The big one here is about knowing how various things work, communication with Borough Councillors, and so on.

Interaction with Local Businesses

We have some great local businesses in Eldene, and it would be good to support them with advertising and so on.  This would all help to raise the profile of the area.  Again, maybe this already happens!

Traffic Calming

Eldene Drive can be a bit of a race track on occasion, though average speeds are within the speed limit.  There are patches such as the mouth of Ecklington where parking on the Drive makes driving quite difficult, though actually this has the bonus effect of slowing cars down!

Suggestions such as “speeding reminders” or a crossing at the location shown below would be worth investigating.

So there we go!  If you’ve made it this far, thank you for reading – would be great to hear from Eldene residents as to whether you agree with this list or think I’m barking completely up the wrong tree!

As I said at the outset, I’m fully aware that most of these are not under direct Parish control, but that’s no reason not to put them on a wishlist…


2 thoughts on “Eldene Wishlist”

  1. The cost of a footpath construction is around £180 per metre, not including any service diversions for utilities in the grassed area that could run into hundreds of thousands to divert for each one that is in the way of the footpath construction. Then there’s the excavating and disposal of existing material. Not pocket money budget. Street lighting if the existing doesn’t meet design codes.
    Having the parking areas in the meads lined to show bays to encourage sensible parking. People park with no consideration and bays will help that.
    Large commercial vehicles/Luton vans should not be permitted to use the bays either, they should be restricted to cars/motorbikes.
    Introduction of electric vehicle charge points to encourage take up of electric cars to fit in with the government’s targets.
    Access from the meads to morrisons, I’m sure that was on one of the planning applications but if I lived there I don’t think I would like the cars revving and waiting to give way with the additional noise and pollution that would generate. The crossing would have to be moved too so most likely will not be in the best place for pedestrians. I’m sure that morrisons would also want some compensation as they will need to relocate and re-line their car park.
    I agree with traffic calming but not but using cars parking as the method for doing that or speed cushions, the existing double yellow lines are a nuisance, waiting vehicles while two buses are stopped, buses on the Ecklington side cannot get into the bus stop because cars park to close. Bus drivers had issues when there is snow/ice on the ground because the gritters cannot access the stop to salt due to parked cars.
    I think police speed checks would be beneficial, even collaborating with the primary school taking part.
    Whilst I’m loath to see our lovely green spaces disappear I think using some of this to cover to parking is needed and will result in less mowing for the parish.
    I agree with a dedicated Facebook page, tagging the chairs personal site is not good practice and the rest of the parish officers are missing those comments.
    I would also like to see some welcome to eldene signs similar to the Nythe ones.
    If a dedicated path is created from the centre to morrisons it would be nice to have something that distinguishes it from a regular path like the luminous chippings that glow in the dark for example.
    Bringing back a direct bus to the hospital would be nice but unless the service is subsidised then I don’t think this will work, a nice one for the wish list though.
    I think I’m all done now, I’ll let you digest that.

    1. Thanks for posting, you make some great points. Not sure I understand about the cars revving, I was talking about better pedestrian access, but I may not have been clear or may have misunderstood?

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