The Sock has collected all the fallen baby Beardshaws and is keeping them in a gilded cage. On Chrimbo Day the twenty-four little celestial cherrybums will be released to brighten the sullen skies as they fly in formation back up to Heaven. Ahhhh.....
Other than that Seasonal Goodwill is short in the Sock household. Very short. Very short indeed. There are several reasons for this but we only have time for
Bah Humbug Number 1.
You may remember the Sock blogging earlier this year about a garden built by guerilla gardeners and used by many in the community of Brighton's Lewes Road area. There had just been the good news that negotiations with the owner of the derelict site meant that it could be used as a garden until the area was NEEDED for redevelopment.
Now the local freebie newspaper reports that the founders of the garden are preparing to make way for a new Tesco Express!
Unbelievable but only too believably crap! There is already an established sizeable Co-op food shop next door, a Spar more or less opposite, a large Sainsbury's a few 100 metres away, a Marks and Spencers express at the nearby petrol station, not to mention all the smaller local food shops in that vicinity.
The newspaper says that Tesco and Sainsbury's are fighting a turf war. A local councillor stated "Any time empty premises become available they are seizing on them and they are getting them. They are the only ones with the finances." Whilst other councillors are in opposition they are apparently powerless to stop them. Why?
Sainsbury's are bad enough but the Sock particularly hates Tesco and will never shop there. Along with the destruction of a beautiful old shop front on the Western Rd. in order to emblazon their blaring Tesco logo all over it, Tesco's has also managed to muscle in on what should have been, one of the prime locations in Brighton. The new(ish) Design-awarded Jubilee Library (nice building (if you like that sort of thing) but shame they initially forgot to put any books in) fronts on to what could have been a rather attractive square in the then newly-developed site.
Located between the exotic fantasy of Brighton Pavilion and the eclectic, slightly Bohemian feel of the North Laines with its interesting individual shops, there is a strange and not altogether pleasant juxtaposition on entering the Library area. Rather like moving from the Medieval Zone to a cheap looking Futuristic/Industrial Zone on the Crystal Maze. This lack of imagination in the architecture is reflected in the retail premises, restaurant chains like Carluccio, Yo Sushi and Starbucks. In a prime situation with its enormous blue logo permanently reflected in the glass walls of the library we have the glory of Pizza Express! Tesco Express is planted almost opposite.
(Another rant for today was the nasty little 'Christmas Market' pictured above... 'Christmas Market' my arse! A smell of greasy, cheap, funfair burgers wafted from the vicinity of the sad tat filled chalets!)
Whilst the Sock is tirading away... another thing... Brighton is extremely housing intensive with it's many terraced streets squashed in together, so every little scrap of open space is incredibly valuable for our urban wildlife. In it's wisdom the Planning Inspectorate, despite years of campaigning against it, are allowing a development to go ahead on a wildlife site near London Road station which was formerly allotments.
Bah Humbug! And here is what the Sock thinks should happen to both Tesco's and the Planning Inspectorate!