Andrew Abbott's Blog

Friday, 19 October 2012

Lincolnshire this week.

You know, for a county that regularly returns Conservative MP’s we certainly are taken for granted and the latest snub is the refusal of DEFRA to grant the Lincolnshire sausage legal protection meaning only sausages made in our county can be described as Lincolnshire. This is on the basis that lots of vested interests who regularly contribute to the Tories can continue to make money at our expense, oh no, silly me, on the basis that there is not enough local link to the product as opposed to the Cornish Pasty that is protected. You know what to do come the election.

Bridge news, yes there is some. Plans for the proposed bridge to span the railway at Brayford in Lincoln have gone on display. The proposal, which is part of a wider plan to relieve the problem of the railway now that the barriers are down so much and which will also feature a pedestrian bridge on the High Street and, for my money will lead to the pedestrianisation of the High Street although this is denied for the moment. This should at least allow walkers to get from the north to the south of the shopping area. In a week when Raspberry Village announced it was closing citing access problems amongst other things, these initiatives can’t come soon enough.

In Boston a proposed new bridge over the Haven have also gone on display and very fine it looks too being a bowstring design. This together with the market place improvements which caused so much disruption both to the town and to businesses but which mercifully is now complete will give Boston a much improved look as the town competes in the ever more difficult battle to attract shoppers.

You wouldn’t expect to have to estimate how much petrol you will need before you fill your tank up would you? When it comes to parking in Lincoln however you have to pay for your ticket up front and frequently find yourself returning to the car park to put some more money in the meter. What tends to happen though is that you don’t do that but go home instead after your purchased time limit whether you have finished in town or not. This issue was discussed at the 6th annual Linking Lincoln City Centre Masterplan conference. At least there is a masterplan. Pay as you leave parking payment was high on the agenda :- Kate Ellis, assistant director of planning and regeneration, told the Lincolnshire Echo: “We should be able to implement pay on exit parking fairly quickly.

“I would like to think that in a year’s time we are at this conference saying it is the first initiative to come out of the strategy.”

Park and Ride remains the Holy Grail, for some reason this is now dependent on the proposed Eastern bypass but it was felt pay on exit was a step in the right direction.

“Whether all of our car parks remain pay and display or some become pay on exit is going to need looking at,” Ms Ellis said.

“I have to confess I did go to Peterborough for an emergency passport and parked in a pay on exit car park at John Lewis and it was really handy.

“I was there for five-and-a-half hours and it cost me £6.

“We are not talking about a traditional highways parking strategy for Lincoln.

“We need to ensure it allows us to deliver and support our growth strategy for the city.”

Finally Cannon and Ball were in the City for the traditional curtain raiser, publicity wise, for the pantomime at Lincoln Theatre Royal. They will star in Dick Whittington this Christmas. Having had the pleasure of meeting Bobby Ball in the Bombay Restaurant after last years show, it was obvious his enthusiasm for this most British entertainment is undiminished and this years offering should be just as good as usual. Judging by the stories of financial woes at this wonderful venue it is vital that they have a successful run this year. Do catch the show if you possibly can, you won’t be disappointed.

Well, that’s this week’s review behind me. Have a good weekend and best wishes to Lincoln City in what should be an easy passage into the first round proper of the FA Cup. (Oh no it won’t!)

                             Rock on Tommy! Picture from

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