HCS Members’ Update March 2024

As promised, here’s an update on some other activities.

Future Events

As you may know, we had to cancel the Transpennine Route Upgrade presentation by Paul Sumner on February 8, 2024 because of snow. Those who had previously booked do NOT need to rebook – a place has already been reserved for you for the new date of 7pm on Thursday, April 25 at New North Road Baptist Church. Those who were unable to attend now have the chance to book for the revised date by going to http://bit.ly/48kZMKZ.

Discover Huddersfield

Details of the 2024 walks’ programme can now be found by going to  https://discoverhuddersfield.uk

Programme leaflets should soon be distributed to local libraries and information points.

As in previous years, walks must be pre-booked via Eventbrite no more than 14 days before each walk date by going to http://bit.ly/DiscoverHuddersfield. The first walk ‘The Irish in Huddersfield’ is on Sunday, March 10.

Planning Matters

Application number:2024/90257

Variation on previous permission 2022/93248 for demolition of existing Piazza shopping centre; part removal of Queensgate Market.

This revision of Phase 1 proposals for Queensgate Market and construction of the library comes with a very extensive but confusing list of plans and reports and a very short period for public response.

Having written to Kirklees requesting an extension to the deadline almost two weeks ago it appears the council has extended the deadline to March 22. I was grateful for an opportunity, along with committee colleagues Geoff Hughes, Sylvia Johnson, Gideon Richards, Howard Smith and Robert Taylor, to discuss the changes in detail with Chris Calvert from the scheme consultants, Pegasus Group, and Jonathan Fishlock from architects Chapman Taylor.

As a result, a submission on the proposals is being submitted in the next few days which will be added to our planning website pages. You will see that, while broadly supportive of the changes, there are a number of requests and concerns.

As always, I urge HCS members to take a look at these revisions and submit your own views. You may wish to expand on some of the issues we have raised or, indeed, add some of your own comments for consideration.

Huddersfield Business Improvement District (BID)

Congratulations Huddersfield Business Improvement District team. Having balloted town centre levy payers, the team has secured a second 5-year term from 2024-2029. The BID, which is a corporate member of the society and managed by Samantha (Sam) Sharp, will now be able to continue and develop its work including Street Rangers, Jet Washing, Graffiti Removal, Promotion of Huddersfield and Footfall Driving Events.

This is particularly important in light of increasing constraints faced by Kirklees and issues that have been raised by the society regarding the poor public perception of the town centre.

For a closer look at what is planned over the second term please go to https://huddersfieldbid.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/2024/01/Huddersfield-BID-Business-Plan-2024-29.pdf

HCS Website

We are receiving a very positive response to our re-launched website. There have been a few teething problems relating to applications for membership and book sales for which we apologise but are thankful that corporate member and HCS web manager Andy Hirst (AH! PR) for efforts to solve these issues with the web designer, Graham Wrathmell.

And Finally

Can I make a final request for anyone who hasn’t yet paid their annual subs to do so as soon as possible. We’d hate to lose you. Please, also remember the cost for individual membership is £12.50 and £30 for corporate membership.

Plus, not only are we always keen to hear from you but we would very much welcome nominations to join the HCS Executive Committee. If you have a little time to spare and about nine Mondays of the year to attend committee meetings, please consider helping us or contact me for a chat.

And, hopefully, I’ll see you at our AGM.

Best wishes,

David Wyles, HCS chairman