Welcome to the Back Garden

Swindon’s Back Garden may not have quite so much greenery as the Front Garden, but it is still a pretty good place to live.

The Back Garden covers the northern edge of Old Town, between Kingshill Area Residents Association and Queen’s Park Community Council.

We aim to exchange of information about living in the area, on the basis that a problem shared is a problem halved, and also because the good things should be shared too.

Back Garden  is free of all political or other groups’ control.

We provide honest advice to anyone who approaches us. And work with other members of Swindon’s ‘Connecting People – Connecting Places’ Central Cluster.

You can reach us by email at swindonbackgarden@yahoo.co.uk.

3 responses to “Welcome to the Back Garden

  1. Victoria Road has a high and rising number of empty properties, which are having a negative impact on the area. To address this problem the Council’s Planning Department is proposing to introduce a Local Development Order (LDO) for part of Victoria Road. The LDO would automatically grant planning permission for the type of development specified in the LDO (subject to Conditions) and by so doing, would remove the need for a planning application to be made. It is hoped that this flexibility will reduce the number of vacant properties in the Victoria Road area.

    It is proposed that the LDO would allow changes between the following range of uses without the need for planning permission:
    C1: Hotels
    C2: Residential Institutions
    C3: Dwelling Houses
    A1: Shops
    A2: Financial and professional services
    A3: Restaurants and cafes
    B1: Business
    D1: Non-residential institutions
    D2: Assembly and leisure

    The Draft LDO can also be viewed on the Council’s website at http://www.swindon.gov.uk/planning

    The consultation period on the Draft LDO runs to November 29 November 2010, during which time comments can be emailed to ddewart@swindon.gov.uk

    • This is a personal response from one member of the Back Garden network.

      I welcome the looser approach to change of use of properties on Victoria Hill. Back Garden is encouraging the establishment of a cultural hub in Swindon based on local performers and artists. Victoria Road could provide useful niche shops to support the hub, for example artist materials, studios, musical equipment shops and rehearsal areas. I would oppose any further bars or pubs on the road, there is already too much loud late-night traffic on the Hill and Prospect Hill from people walking between Old and New Town. Licensed restaurants would be acceptable.

      Peter Green

  2. Very useful stuff, but I can’t help thinking that the College Site is integral to this and that piecemeal approaches to problems breed more problems.

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