This week's Coventry Observer letters page...... - The Coventry Observer

This week's Coventry Observer letters page......

Coventry Editorial 20th May, 2021 Updated: 20th May, 2021   0

‘This over-building on Coventry’s green areas must stop’

AS A Coventry Tree Warden, I was delighted to see the report indicating the housing figures for Coventry may have been overestimated. Hopefully this means there will be an urgent review before any more of our precious green land is handed to developers.

We have been trying to protect the city’s trees for a few years but their importance to the environment and people’s health is completely ignored as are the many objections we submit to oppose fellings and the Tree Preservation Orders we ask for.

Building on greenfield sites is so much easier for developers and Coventry seems to have become the place where building on green land is easy to achieve. Beautiful places surrounding this city are under threat. Places like the Windmill golf course and Eastern Green fields, open land at Keresley, worryingly close to precious ancient woodland, and open fields around Finham.

We pleaded with the council not to approve development at the Sphinx golf course – an important inner city green area and not designated as building land in the Local Plan, but the applicant was obviously told it would get permission or would not have purchased the land.

Then there is council-owned green land – lots of small and important pockets where a few houses can be slotted in eg along the River Sowe, all being built on, regardless of flooding potential and the continued devastation of green land proposed along London Road (yet to be agreed).

The council has already approved the loss of all trees and other vegetation on an allotment site to build a recycling facility next to the tip to take waste from eight Midlands authorities. But there are three other applications still under consideration which will all destroy precious green land.

The largest area between London Road and Allard Way was green belt until removed in the Local Plan.

Protestations from the council it would have the same protection have not been honoured.

This site lies between two very busy roads but is amazingly peaceful, having rewilded from farmland. It has veteran oak trees, a lovely wild-flower meadow and a woodland planted by the council. So important to local people and wildlife’s health and well-being. This development does not have to happen, especially if housing numbers are now in question.

We can hope our council will review their plans and start putting citizens’ health before developers’ demands at a time when green space has never been more important.

Almost every approved development means the loss of mature trees – our heritage, many far older and more important than some of our buildings. Trees that have huge amenity value, that clean our air, keep us healthy and help prevent climate change.

Ann Wilson


Calling former colleagues from the electricity board’s district offices in Sandy Lane

A NUMBER of my former colleagues worked at the old Coventry district offices in Sandy Lane, Coventry, and I am trying to track them down.

The photograph above show some of the people I am trying to find are Pete Green, Rob Marriner, Colin Marriott, Chris Hadleigh, Rich Whelan, Terry Balls and Malcolm Raishbrook.

We are keen to find many of these ‘lads’ as we would like them to join us at an event.

An old friend and I are in the process of planning a re-union in Nottingham to take place on the September 3, 2021, and by using the above photo and by contacting the local newspaper titles covering the areas of the former East Midlands Electricity Board, have started to

identify and make contact with some of these, ‘lads’.

September 6 2021 marks a significant milestone in our lives as it will be 50 years since most of us met for the first time. We were all recent school leavers setting out on the next great chapter of our lives.

On September 6 1971, about 90 of us from across the East Midlands Electricity Board Region converged on the Wollaton, Nottingham, Training Centre to begin what, for many of us, would be a complete working life in the Electrical Industry.

Most of us turned up suitcases in hand to be put up in ‘digs’ for 40 weeks of that first year, travelling home for weekends to return the following Monday Morning.

Naturally friendships were made and some great experiences shared.

At the end of that first year we all returned to our respective district offices to continue our, ‘hands on’, training in our chosen trade with those that we would be working with on a daily basis.

The next three years we would return to Wollaton for specific training associated with our trade and those 1st year friendships would be resurrected each year.

There is a Facebook Group that they may not be aware of  here.

Regards and many thanks

Brian O’Brien

EDITOR’S NOTE – Any of the people from the offices or anyone who knows them can contact us at the Coventry Observer – at [email protected] or by calling 01527 588657 and we will pass the information onto Mr O’Brien.


Will you be making the Summer Vegan Pledge this June?

THIS June Animal Aid will once again be hosting our Summer Vegan Pledge.

The Summer Vegan Pledge is the perfect opportunity for those who are interested in trying a plant-based diet to do so.

The production of animal products, such as meat and dairy, is one of the biggest contributors to greenhouse gas emissions, deforestation, water pollution, land use and fresh water.

Those who sign up to the Summer Vegan Pledge will have access to all of the information they need to go vegan.

Sign up for free at:

T Bradbury,

Animal Aid


IT WAS fantastic to see our year as the UK City of Culture get under way and we have so much to look forward to in the coming 12 months – something for all tastes and more.

This is a chance for everyone to get involved and help showcase all that is good and positive about Coventry.

To use one of the key lines from the film Nativity – where Coventry also took centre stage: ‘It’s time to sparkle and shine!’


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