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HC Anounces a new customer service hub


Denise Lloyd
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Well, you have to admit the Council have managed to turn an ugly building into a veritable eyesore since they moved in some years ago - I mean, what does the present (restricted) entrance in particular say about the Council's attitude to Planning and Conservation? Do as I say not as I do? But hang on - £1m?! Oh, of course, it will save £1.9million over 10 years, these things always do, or so they say. But £1m for a bit of cladding and a glass box?! Oh, of course, it will be done by BBLP - say no more. Except, what about the expensive refit of Franklin Barnes just a few years ago? What happened about that saving? And the one before that?

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I think I am correct in assuming this is  the relevant PA - nice to see they source locally for their professional services!

 

 

 

P161565/CD3 Blueschool House 1 Blue School Street Hereford Herefordshire HR1 2LX Proposed refurbishment & extension to existing 2 storey office Council Development Reg 3 Valid 23 June 2016

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Following on from TWG's comments on this PA thought I would have a look at the application. Agent PS Hub  Berkshire Co Uk anybody know anything about this company?  Reading through their brochure all the usual crap written - but cannot find this company listed on company check it's a mystery perhaps somebody could throw some light on that 

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The company is listed - I understand the government is paying for the lions share of this work, inc the consultants, hence the cheap and nasty tat being foisted on us. Ward councillor Polly Andrews response to me and others is 'we (ie the Council) don't have much say in the matter' - well, I beg to differ. Councillors are elected by residents to serve us, not to roll over when big brother comes along throwing his weight about. Can she in all conscience stand by and let this happen?

 

The earlier scheme, which looked like an eastern bloc interrogation centre (and not like the picture at all), has been amended to the other extreme to now look like a legoland box. PSHub have not a jot of design sensibility.

 

The dark red to the left hand side by the way is misrepresented - it is actually a bright red formica panelling - 10m from the Scheduled Monument of the City Wall. A travesty - please object - disregard the 'comments are closed' on the website and email Ed Thomas directly - ethomas@herefordshire.gov.uk ref P161565/CD3. The deadline now is 11 August, so hurry!

 

As an aside, I heard that the Council press team knew nothing about this proposal until they saw it in the Hereford Times! 

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Looking at the proposed programme for this project proves once again my theory that Council's do very little but constantly re-organise. This allows them to break audit chains and give themselves new job titles on a regular basis and busy themselves setting up this, that and the other, for as long as it takes until the next reorganisation is planned.

 
So, the programme shows that Blueschool House decants to Town Hall, Town Hall moves to Shire Hall, Plough Lane moves to Town Hall, Blueschool House moves to Plough Lane, Shire Hall moves to Nelson House, Franklin House moves to Blueschool House. New name badges all round. Brilliant! Joe Public won't have a clue whats going on, or be able to get hold of anyone, which is just the way the Council like it. GB Liners will have a busy year as well.
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The red formica'd facelift horror is going to Planning Committee on 14 September, recommended for approval, despite the conservation officer having concerns and strong objections form the City Council and the Civic Society.

 

Ward Cllr Polly Andrews supports it ... her view is that, as someone else (ie Government) is paying for the lions share, the Council should grab the offer and not worry too much about what it looks like, this attitude seemingly regardless of the impact on the built environment, which will be around a lot longer than transient central and local government departments, and, come to that, councillors. Such is democracy I suppose - it barely functions in Herefordshire, as we know.

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at least the top one looks like a modern building, the second "red shed" looks more like a cheaply designed primary school

The red building looks very similar to those rusty "portacabin" style buildings installed at the Robert Owen School in Black Friars street (really the old Boys High School). Does no one in this Council have any understanding how good buildings can lift your spirits and bad buildings spoil and detract from an area?

I thought with the reduction in staff, especially with Mr Robinson gone, that there would be plenty of space at Plough Lane - which would be much more convenient for a customer hub if there was a tram service along Great Western Way.

Hoople dont need the entire top floor of Plough Lane and could go next to their employment office in the Franklin Barnes Building.

That way Council staff would be closer together, apart from the departments moving up to that massive building Elgar House at the top of Holmer Road and all the Hoople staff would be together.

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The building is to become the DSS 'job centre plus' or some such name - moving from Berrington Street. The Council will share some of the ground floor reception area. Basically, the Council, as landlords, are getting the incoming tenants to 'do it up' on the cheap (and very nasty). Planning and other departments will move to Plough Lane, via a stay at the Town Hall.

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Terrible decision - classic 'do as we say, not as we do' move by this shallow and corrupt council. The offer of free money, no matter how bad the outcome for the built environment, was always going to be too much for them resist. The Ward Councillor should be ashamed of herself. Let's see how long it takes before this version of the customer service centre closes all together.

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Everybody eventually runs out of rope in the end you mark my words!  So many of these Councillors seem to be sooo afraid at the moment shame.  Whilst I have reasons not to care for Mark Hubbard he did stand up and speak out but even ones like Jim Kenyon seem to have become suppressed WHY and HOW? 

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Have you ever been in the business side of the building? Absolute mess, staff vieing for limited space, no privacy and constant noise. The council are very lax when it comes to managing it's work spaces. Job Centres/DSS have a corporate model of consistency when working such as no coffee breaks at work stations and no unnecessary non work related chatter...Job Centre sharing work space with the council will be interesting. Many are off to Plough Lane - plenty of space but not enough parking spaces (free) for workers...shame..

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