Showing posts from March, 2021

Lord Lieutenant of Bedfordshire in Easter Service Broadcast

Bedfordshire Lieutenancy: Lord-Lieutenant brings a virtual message of rebirth and renewal to the people of Bedfordshire Lord-Lieutenant brings a virtual service to the people of Bedfordshire to reflect on the Easter message of rebirth and renewal as we move forward and strive to shape a better world. In the last 12 months, HM Lord-Lieutenant of Bedfordshire Helen Nellis has been keeping in touch with the people of Bedfordshire virtually through her weekly online messages, periodic virtual services and via regular contact with voluntary organisations, businesses, and faith, health and educational establishments. Throughout the pandemic, individuals and organisations alike have felt the full impact of the virus in a variety of ways including the loss of loved ones, the closure of businesses and schools, challenges of remote learning and the struggles to keep charities afloat. The purpose of the messages, services and regular contact has been to boost morale, spread a message of hope and

New Planning Application for Employment Site in Houghton Regis

Fiera Real Estate (FRE UK) and Wrenbridge, in partnership with Henry Davidson Developments, have acquired a five-acre site in an employment area of Houghton Regis, where they have submitted plans to develop a new Grade A warehouse development valued at £22 million. The site sits in a prime location with easy access to the motorway network via Thorn Road, Houghton Regis, and the A5 dual carriageway. The site was purchased from a private landowner on behalf of Fiera Real Estate Opportunity Fund V UK (FREOF V UK), the latest fund in Fiera Real Estate’s programmatic venture series with CBRE Global Investment Partners (CBRE GIP) according to PropertyWorld .  FRE UK and Wrenbridge have submitted the plans to develop the 100,968 sq ft scheme consisting of six units across four buildings at Thorn Road, Houghton Regis.  Baytree has already acquired employment sites on the southern side of Thorn Road, a large unit still standing empty since construction, and another site destined to be used by A

Our Local Zoo to Reopen!

Our local zoo is pleased to be re-opening! It's that time we've all been waiting for, the Zoos are re-opening and you can now book your early bird tickets for a great day out!  The animals are so excited to welcome visitors back. At ZSL Whipsnade Zoo, visit their youngest elephant Beth with her family, and if you're lucky you might catch a glimpse of nine-month old Red panda cub, Nilo.  And at ZSL London Zoo, come and meet the new tigress, Gaysha, and see how much six-month-old okapi, Ede has grown.  With everyone is ready for a day out the priority for the zoo is to re-open safely and responsibly, in line with the Government schedule. So they will have social distancing in place and reduced capacities. Tickets are, therefore, limited, but the good news is that tickets are on sale through to August so you can book ahead for your summer trip now.  Make a booking now! Photo credits: ZSL  If you have news for Houghton Regis, please send it in

Neighbourhood Watch Launches Protect Your Car Campaign

PROTECT YOUR CAR campaign Car crime is a real problem in the UK. Alarmingly, one car is stolen every ten minutes.(1) With Covid-19 and the recent lockdowns, many people aren’t driving or checking on their cars as much as they used to. At Neighbourhood Watch, we need your help to remind car owners to remain vigilant about where and how they park their cars, in order to keep them safe.  John Hayward-Cripps, CEO of Neighbourhood Watch Network, says, “Most car crimes happen because cars are left unlocked.  There is a misconception that some cars are auto-locking and lock themselves if left unattended after a period of time. This isn’t always correct.  Another misconception is that your car is too old and no one will bother stealing it.  This is also incorrect – both new and old cars are at risk. Having a car stolen or broken into is more than simply a hassle, it can impact on people’s livelihoods.  The good news is that there are simple steps everyone can take to help reduce the risk to th

Amazon announces a new delivery station in Houghton Regis

Amazon is to start work on the development of a new site at Thorn Road, Houghton Regis. The site will enhance its delivery and seller services, creating over 60 permanent jobs in addition to hundreds of driver opportunities for Amazon Logistics’ delivery service partners and Amazon Flex delivery partners. The 10,700 square metre building for Amazon Logistics is expected to be fully operational this summer and will serve customers based in the South West Bedfordshire area.  As well as creating more than 60 permanent jobs, there will be driver opportunities for Amazon Logistics’ delivery service partners and Amazon Flex delivery partners. Delivery stations power the last mile of Amazon's order process and help speed up deliveries for its customers.  Packages are shipped to a delivery station from neighbouring Amazon fulfilment and sortation centres, loaded into delivery vehicles and delivered to customers.  South West Bedfordshire MP, Andrew Selous, said: “I am delighted that 60 perm

Traffic Calming Scheme for Windsor Drive & Peel Street Car Park Management Proposals

A couple of highway proposals schemes for Houghton Regis will be discussed at Monday night's Planning Committee at Houghton Regis Town Council. ( Agenda and Meeting Link ) WINDSOR DRIVE Central Bedfordshire Council are proposing to introduce speed humps and a tiger crossing on Windsor Drive. A tiger crossing is one that permits pedestrians to cross as well as cyclists. The location for the crossing would be in the vicinity of where the Houghton Brook crosses Windsor Drive.  At the moment there is a residential development in progress at The Brook on the northern side of the Houghton Brook*. The northern side of the brook on the east side of Windsor Drive has a tarmac path, as does the southern side of the brook on the west side of Windsor Drive. There have been requests over the years for traffic calming at this point from cyclists and pedestrians, notably during rush hour periods. (* update: CBC confirmed on 30 March that the residential development mentioned in the Public N

Bidwell West Safety Concerns Over School Walking Route

Several new residents in new homes off Thorn Road, Houghton Regis are walking their children to school but have not got a continuous footpath along Thorn Road or Bedford Road.  The footpaths are mainly from the Thorn roundabout leading towards Aylesbury Drive.   A spokesperson for Central Bedfordshire Council said, “The new footpath forms part of the highway improvement works associated with the HRN2 development. The s106 planning obligations for phase 2 of these works require the developer to provide the new footway prior to 250 premises being occupied. There are currently 190 occupied. However, they have confirmed that the footpath will be completed ahead of the s106 planning obligation and is likely to be finished by the end of April.” “We are working with Taylor Wimpey to improve traffic calming measures on Bedford Road.” Bedford Road Roadworks Cllr Susan Goodchild posted to Facebook yesterday, “Over a sustained period I have been receiving reports with regard to the poor condition

How do you inspire the next musical minds during a pandemic

How do you inspire the next musical minds during a pandemic that has prevented live music?  Central Bedfordshire’s Inspiring Music & the Bath Phil have the answer: Orchestras in Context , a new digital resource for the classroom and home. The pandemic has made it near-impossible for music students to experience live classical concerts, which are vital for their development. So that A/AS Level students don’t miss out on live concerts, Inspiring Music commissioned Bath Phil to bring to life the great musical minds from the 20th and 21st centuries. All performances will be available to stream at home or in classrooms. Recorded live by professional musicians and a socially distanced chamber orchestra, Orchestras in Context: The Set Works Sessions are a set of three online broadcasts and accompanying lesson plans. These online sessions provide an in-depth, user-friendly contextualisation of them - against wider orchestral listening examples. The three performances ¹  include excerpts f

£255k funding boost to help local high streets reopen

Central Bedfordshire will receive £255,873 to help local high streets reopen and attract shoppers and tourists. The Government is investing a total of £56 million through the Welcome Back Fund to help councils prepare for the end of lockdown when it is safe to do so. This is part of a wider package of measures to revitalise high streets and level up communities – including steps to make it easier for eateries to serve customers outdoors and set up market stalls this Summer. Improvements can be made to local high streets across Central Bedfordshire to help them safely and successfully open after lockdown. A total of £56 million will be invested through the new Welcome Back Fund to help councils across England boost tourism, improve green spaces and provide more outdoor seating areas, markets and food stall pop-ups – giving people more, safer options to reunite with friends and relatives this Summer. South West Bedfordshire MP, Andrew Selous said he was delighted Central Bedfordshire is

Houghton Brook Storage Area Will Save Luton from Floods

A new £8.5 million flood storage area to benefit 600 residential and commercial properties, along with key infrastructure, in Luton has been completed. The Environment Agency worked with South East Midlands Local Enterprise Partnership (SEMLEP) and Luton Borough Council on the major flood defence works on Houghton Brook in Chalton Parish near Luton and Houghton Regis. The new flood storage area can hold back 140,000m³ of water, equivalent to 56 Olympic sized swimming pools. At times of heavy rain and it will then allow it to drain slowly and under control into the Houghton Brook – cutting the risk of flooding to people and property along the Houghton Brook and River Lea in Luton. The control structure of the Houghton Brook Flood Storage Area One of the key benefits of the scheme is that it will mean important services and employment will be able to carry on during heavy rainfall events whereas, in previous floods, roads near the River Lea were inaccessible. Drone view of the works in p

Houghton Brook Clean Up

Today, ten people gathered at the source of Houghton Brook on the Green to clear litter, large and small, from the stream bed and banks up to Park Road North.   The team gathered on The Green beforehand Amongst the items they found, and removed, were  a garden parasol,  a digging tool,  car interior fittings,  metal,  toys,  glass and plastic bottles and lots of cans,  two jerseys,  a paint can,  plastic bags and sweet and crisp wrappers.   Team member Paul White with part of today's haul A risk assessment was carried out prior to work starting as the banks of the stream can be steep and slippery.  Clare and Katy working together in the sludge The volunteer team comprised Tracey McMahon, Susan Goodchild, Sue Jenkins, Julian, Michael Murphy, Paul White, Clare Evans with Toby and Katy, and Sally Gray with support from Houghton Regis Town Council.   Sue and Julian tackle the steep banks and muddy streambed Taskmaster Sally Gray said, “It was lovely to hear the comments from passers by

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