£buryI am writing to illustrate my despair at the current Poundbury development that appears to spreading like a bacterial infection on the western edge of Dorchester. Living in the best place to be, Bridport, I rarely go to Dorchester, and in a confusing way, I find Dorchester both bland and irritating at the same time. In my opinion (which in no way should be taken as fact) the town itself is far from an idyllic market town, not helped by its complete lack of character.

In my understanding, be it correct or otherwise, the Poundbury development was intended to reflect the architecture and community of a traditional West Dorset country village. This, I assume, is the brief that the designers, architects and developers are working by. It is possible that I am not the only person who is struggling with that concept, considering that the Poundbury development is quite possibly the diametric opposite of that brief, in every perceivable way.

I am no designer, nor an architect or a developer, but it doesn't take an expert in this field to reach the conclusion that the surreal, and quite frankly "fake" Poundbury development appears to be taking heavy inspiration from the following:

- Kensington & Chelsea
- Walt Disney
- Regents Park Residencies
- 18th Century Normandy
- Southern European/Spanish
- Rural Germany/Austria
- Peckham
- Far-Reaching corners of the Milky Way

It really does stretch the imagination as to how these inspirations fitted the brief, but I am sure that "3am Decisions" over a 20 year old bottle of your favourite single malt may have persuaded you in this area. Perhaps you watched Mary Poppins and Chitty Chitty Bang Bang back to back, and simply couldn't shake them from your mind?

To be blunt, the development is an embarrassment. Simply an embarrassment. If I had never been to West Dorset before, and never seen a classic example of a West Dorset village, and my first experience of one was Poundbury, I would be, from that point onwards, badly informed in extremis!

Allow me to move tentatively to the subject of village culture, the element that I fear Poundbury will severely lack. Most West Dorset villages have solicitors and estate agents "living" in them. Poundbury, on the other hand, is teeming with these people "working" in the village. This is no surprise considering that houses are changing hands quickly, but three (or more) estate agents' offices? Five solicitors’ offices? Along with a host of ambiguous training and business agencies, an Art Gallery, a supermarket or two (disguised as a grocers stores)? Although I haven't dared to venture too far into the citadel, I wouldn't be surprised if you have failed to install a pub! Although perhaps you have opted for a pretend pub, with a pretend landlord, selling pretend beer from a pretend brewery - all in a friendly and sterile non-smoking environment, serving modern Italian cuisine with a low glycemic index, from frozen produce sourced as far from West Dorset as humanly possible.

Obviously you will be aware of the "Ghost town village syndrome" that has affected our area over the last decade. This is where the majority of villages in the area are empty for the majority of the year due to second home buying. I am assuming that that Poundbury may avoid this fate, because it is sure to be full of commuters that get up at 5am to catch the train to London and return back to their bored and exhausted partners just in time for Newsnight. Poundbury has created a new syndrome "Commuter Theme Park Syndrome", and a Commuter's Theme Park, is exactly what Poundbury is.

To conclude this correspondence, may I whole heartedly persuade you to stop building when you reach Winterbourne Abbas? I fear that any development of Poundbury beyond Winterbourne Abbas may begin to infringe on Bridport's 10 mile protection-zone. There is no official zone, but I fear that civil unrest may result from any breach of this request. In addition, please could you make an allowance within your commendable carbon footprint to visit some of the villages surrounding Bridport, possibly in an effort to rejuvenate your frame of reference for any future developments?

Yours sincerely

Charlie English

Comments  

 
#1 El_Scorchio 09-02-2007 19:34
\'Red Rooster\' sic. To draw blood with a stabbing motion
 
 
#2 skelliton_hand 12-02-2007 16:52
Why is it that people leave doors wide open in the office making us all shiver with cold ... ditto on busses, all the windows are open freezing us to death that postmen put letters trough the letter box leaving letters dangling and not pushing them through properly, how irritating old age pensioners in electric wheelchairs think nothing of bashing people out the way in the supermarket isles and on the pavements, like their vehicals was armour plated tanks or something bus drivers abruptly brake and misuse the accellerator flinging people about in their seats, some passengers get physically sick you know, and there are frail old dears on the busses and some of them have fallen down dog owners adroitly avoid picking up their pooches poo when they think no ones looking people incessently bang doors when there is no need to people say 'its cold', when obviously it is ditto say 'I'm bored' whilst there's plenty of work for them to be getting on with people with bad breath sit next to me or in the vacinity of me, have'nt they heard of 'good mouthkeeping'?, and no, this is'nt a 30 second cursery brush with a worn out toothbrush hear, or do'nt they care about the 'blowlamp' effect they have?, talk about Force 10 Halletosis or what, yuk
 
 
#3 and another thingThe Bat 14-02-2007 15:49
\""""Baby on board\"""" sticker is to warn other road users that the driver is paying more attention to their little pink smelly thing thaqn to driving or other road users and are liable to swerve or turn randomly or stop without signals. Personally, said sticker would infuriate me as it shows that all my hard earned twages are taxed to support the small consumer in front.Can we get \"""" Grumpy old sod on board\"""" stickers?
 
 
#4 Carlito 15-02-2007 10:15
Let's start an """"Another Thing 2 - abusive comeback section!"""" Just for the fun of it! In response to Skelliton_hand (respectively): 1. Cold is a matter of perception. You're just afraid of fresh air. Get out there! Fill those lungs! 2. Busses? What the hell are you doing on a bus? And anyway, they open the windows to dilute the stench of urine and vomit. 3. Posties have better things to do than carefully ensuring that all post is inserted at the correct trajectory and force in to the receiving letter box. Buy a whippet and train it to get your post for you. 4. If you can't avoid an OAP driving a mobility scooter then you should be IN one matey! 5. Busses again? (and anyway...isn't it buses?) - if you had to cart impoverished elderly people and non-drivers around the country side all day, you'd be trying to get rid of a few in the process wouldn't you eh? 6. What kind of sick-minded individual watches dog owners to see if they'll pick up poo or not? Do you sit in hedges with Night Vision Goggles? I can just imagine you with a notebook reading...""""0315hrs Man with Boxer (brown with black snout)...Boxer urinates on gravestone...possible blasphemer REPORT!"""" 7. Banging on doors when there is no need? So let's list the reasons not to bang on a door: a) There is a working doorbell. b) There is no one in. c) There is a working door knocker. Very strange... 8. """"it's Cold"""" when obviously it is...yes I can see where you're going with this. Truisms. Truisms like """"you've had a hair cut"""", or """"haven't you grown"""" or """"worst things have happened at sea"""" or """"it won't affect the price of eggs"""". But in the case of """"It's Cold"""" surely they are simply requiring confirmation that their perception of cold is valid. They are validating their feelings with you. You should appreciate it, and be flattered by the attention! All you need to say is """"ooo yes it is a bit nippy isn't it?"""" and you return the compliment! 9. Boredom is often given a tough time. Most report that being bored is for people that can't think creatively and are lazy. But INFACT boredom is a sign of the highly evolved minds among us. Boredom in the face of 'work-to-be-done' is very difficult to achieve. The process of deciding that the work to be done is plainly beneath the """"Boredee"""" is one of great importance. Without boredom, Bridport Radio would never exist. It probably wouldn't have even been conceived as an idea, hadn't the founders at some point been totally and utterly bored. Just look at all of these bored people struggling to alleviate their boredom by posting rantings on this site? Boredom is where the greatest achievements come from. If no one ever got bored, then we'd all be too busy with our heads down, getting on with it, rather than having the balls to stand back and analyse how YOU feel about your life, and admit that you are bored. Here's for Boredom! Boredom rules! 10. """"Halletosis"""" (sic) is a very handy social tool...especially when spelt correctly. Halitosis will handily stop people from invading your personal space. I personally carry a poo-mouth spray around with me, especially when I'm in a crowded area in which I require some space. Poo-Mouth Spray (TM) has been specially formulated by the geniuses at Tchzibo from a by-product of their brand of coffee. They advertise that it creates a 10ft buffer zone around the user. The most I can get out of it 6ft though. So there you are Skelliton_hand. I meant no offence by any comments above. It's just that today I'm so bored I don't have the energy to think up of any gripes of my own, so I took the easy option of picking yours apart. Happy Pancake Day!
 
 
#5 Chief Wigam 15-02-2007 10:46
Surely, in the case of Poundbury, the expansion of the town is drawing IN the populace, not the other way around.
 
 
#6 The Bat 15-02-2007 21:19
just to add a note, carlito are you saying that all smokers are not sensible drinkers ? and i hope you and your smoking friends are looking forward to the horrible yellow colour that your smoking room is going to be in the very near future and i\'m afraid that all of you have no need for your poo-mouth spray, you all stink anyway. rather you than me friend.
 
 
#7 Chief Wigam 16-02-2007 07:02
Can we agree to agree that she looks like a horse-bloke and she shaves twice daily?
 
 
#8 jakebirkett 16-02-2007 14:58
""""Farm boy"""" can't read, can't write, but can drive a tractor """"you avin any?"""" would you be interested in a romantic meeting? """"fraggle"""" An unatractive young lady """"fraggle rock"""" a group of fraggles around a bench or such meeting place
 
 
#9 Morning Loves It 21-02-2007 03:34
Wow, I didn\'t realise I had such womanly hips! /goes back to wondering how to top that effort for the next New Year....hmmm Carnival :)
 
 
#10 poundburytuzo 18-03-2007 12:32
i think some of it is quite nice, not the tower... has anyone seen the other tower roof thingy in construction at the moment perched on stilts?
 
 
#11 Morning Loves It 13-06-2007 19:01
This website has a good take on Poundbury. Worth a read. http://worldofstuart.excellentcontent.com/pound/poundbury.htm
 

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