Under the M32

For some obscure reason the parliamentary recess doesn’t end until tomorrow. Perhaps it’s a Bank Holiday in Scotland? Who knows… So I’ll be back to ‘work’ tomorrow having spent recess in Bristol, but with various trips to Swindon, Stroud and Exeter to do Labour Party things. Tomorrow there will be at least two, possibly three sittings of the Finance Bill Committee, and my Ten Minute Rule Bill – which could be on at 3.30pm after Health questions, but could well be pushed further down the Order of Business if there are statements or urgent questions.

I’ve been trying to organise a visit and a meeting with the people behind this great project, trying to reclaim the public space under the M32 (by the Tesco/ Ikea roundabout), which at the moment is primarily used by the public for fly-tipping and as somewhere prostitutes take their punters. Admittedly it’s never going to be the prettiest place, and the whole idea of sticking the motorway right through a residential area in the ugliest, most concrete-heavy way wasn’t a great one… But I really think these local residents have the imagination and resolve to make something good happen here. It’s good that the nearby mosque is also on board.

So far they’ve just been painting things in pretty pastel colours, but there’s talk about doing a lot more with it. After all, the St James Barton roundabout isn’t a brilliant location either, but as the recent Stokes Croft festival showed, people can party on a roundabout in the middle of one of Bristol’s busiest road junctions and still have fun…

Here’s the video…

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  • Steve Oram  On June 8, 2011 at 12:59 pm

    They should be given a chance, and assisted. As with Stokes Croft in Bristol, it’s local residents with positive ideas and ideals trying to reclaim and transfigure the ethos for their communities.

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