You may recall I blogged about the Jewellery Quarter’s future and the Neighbourhood Planning process back in December. That post generated some articulate and considered responses:
Jan said: ‘I moved to the jq because of the lovely buildings and the mix of industry and residential properties…if we want to create a community here there has to be a mix that encourages a wider residential basis…the area has become more vibrant attracting people to visit for work and play…we do need to tip the balance a little further in utilising gorgeous empty buildings.’
Prof G said: ‘There is a case for celebrating and asserting the value of the Quarter as heritage, and I think this is entirely compatible with the types of new businesses that are coming into the Quarter. Without those, and the residents who make a long term commitment to the area, the gains of the past few years will be lost. It will work best as an urban (urbane?) village, and this will mean compromise to squeeze in the best modern life has to offer, together with our rich heritage.’
Matt B said: ‘We need to ask some fundamental questions of all stakeholders (jewellery, other businesses, residents, visitors): What needs to happen to keep you here? What will make you prosper? Where do you want to be located? Why are you here in the first place?’
Sound advice. But it represents the views of about 0.1% of the population of the JQ and now the Prince’s Foundation are coming back, in March, to continue the scoping work of seeing exactly how a Neighbourhood Plan might help the JQ become the place spoken of by Jan, Prof G and Matt B. Some aspects of their visit will be open to all, and some parts by invitation only to keep the numbers manageable. The JQNF will be attending the invitation-only sessions and representing the views of residents. We need to hear from you what you want for the future of the JQ. And so I’m starting a process off now, right now, that will enable us to stand up at the workshops and deliver the verdict of the residents on what we think the JQ needs.
So, let’s kick it off here and now. Give us your views on what you think will improve the JQ, while keeping the balance between industry, heritage and residential amenity that attracted many of us to live here in the first place. Email us (infoATjqnfDOTorg) photos of what you think are the gems of the JQ, and the eye-sores. Come along to our JQNF Open Meeting on the 28th February and have your say.
Don’t miss out on YOUR chance to shape where you live.