I’m Martin Norman, founder of the ‘Keep the G in WGC’ group, and very grateful for you visiting this page and indeed for your overwhelming support. Welwyn Garden City is one of two truly unique and pioneering designs for enjoying the benefits of Town but set in a natural environment, with Families living in beautiful homes with gardens, providing safe space for their children to play in and connect with Nature. But that’s just part of the concept.
Ebenezer Howard’s vision was to welcome everyone to a diverse community with people from all backgrounds living in Peace, Friendship and able to enjoy each other’s company, celebrating art, culture and shared love and appreciation of beautiful natural surroundings, with tree-lined streets and an abundance of green space for all to enjoy.
A typical street in WGC shows how a build 15-years ago was in keeping with a build back in 1949.
What could be more idyllic? we believe passionately in Community Spirit, and since we have lived here, everyone has wrapped their wings around us with friendship, care and compassion. That includes everyone in Healthcare, our Neighbours, and everyone we stop and talk to.
All of this is in danger; grave danger because of ill-thought developments, in progress and proposed, which will have a very significant negative impact on every resident of this Town, even those wanting to settle here, notwithstanding tourists from all over the World.
No regard is paid to the desperate need for additional infrastructure to support new homes. Existing infrastructure, from Healthcare, education and shops to transport are already beyond breaking point. Due diligence and adherence to the Council’s OWN regulations are proving non-existent. Planning meetings simply do not take into consideration the impact on quality of life and wellbeing. Despite the declaration of a climate emergency, the Council are willing to build up to 11 storey blocks of flats, which will only worsen the crisis. People will suffer from a decline in good mental health, reduction in light, as well as being subject to noise pollution and environmental damage.
None of this is a “done deal”; please do not be disheartened. The Council has caused deliberate confusion with all of their plans. Due to intense public pressure and anger, we have already successfully forced the Council to postpone the BioPark development to September 9th. We think the extremely rapid growth of this group has gone a long way towards raising awareness. At its best, it is Community Spirit and proof that every resident can raise their voices and objections.
You may be thinking, What can I do? There are many ways. On this website, you will see many links to our social media presence, where you will be welcomed into the group. Some links will take you directly to the proposed development plans and give you the opportunity to object in writing. Talk to your friends, neighbours, mention the group on your own social media pages. You can email your ward Councillor, reminding them of their duty to listen to and act on the concerns of their constituents. We also need those of you able to attend the next Council DMC meeting on 9th September. A number of us have been pressing the Council very hard on finding an alternative location for this. They have yet to respond. You can email them directly at firstname.lastname@example.org
We know we have a housing crisis. Indeed, with the BioPark plan, no provision has been made for ANY SOCIAL HOUSING, despite the Council having strict regulations in place regarding allocations. I have no doubt the same will apply to other plans.
We intend to hold the Council to account, forcing them to demonstrate far greater accountability and transparency in everything they intend to do. With the help of such wonderful people, we know that together we can ensure the legacy and ethos of the Garden City concept is adhered to robustly, that our Grandchildren and beyond can be proud of.