2nd May 2002
Office of Jim Cousins M.P.,
21 Portland Terrace,
Newcastle upon Tyne,
re: Proposals for the development of the former Paint Factory site,
Portland Road, Ouseburn Valley.
Thank you for your telephone calls regarding my e-mail to Jim Cousins MP concerning an exchange of correspondence between myself and Newcastle City Council. I enclose copies of previous correspondence I sent to the City Council on this subject (1), and a copy of a letter sent to the preferred developer’s architects (2). The only letter I have received from either Newcastle City Council, or the architects, is one sent by Mr (deleted), Group Manager – Development Planning dated 17th April last. This contains only the most general information about new proposals, of which you seem already well aware.
I reiterate that my concern is that any development of this site, the Paint Factory, will be predicated on taking up land from the City Stadium public open space. Public Open Space is at a premium in all inner cities, and this area of our city is no exception. I am not against all or any development of the former Paint Factory; indeed, with the right scheme the whole Ouseburn Valley would benefit. But, in my view, such a scheme should not be dependent on taking up Public Open Space for private benefit.
Thank you for your interest.
1. This letter is in addition to others previously posted to the blog. I shall leave the interested to read them as a whole. There is very little solid information in any of them but they perhaps highlight how easy it would be to lose public open space by default. To this day I do not know why the prospective developers, so keen previously, pulled out.
2. I never received a reply from the architects to my typed letter. All attempts by myself to track down this letter (substantively the same one as went to Newcastle City Council's Planning chief and Jim Cousins MP) have failed. I now conclude that it was lost when a series of data storage floppy discs failed one after another about this time.