The Colchester Chronicle is a hyperlocal blog for Britain’s Oldest Recorded Town. Our labour of love is to bash out blog posts on a daily basis that cover arts, traders and Council matters around Sunny Colch. We are keen to work with anyone who is doing something interesting around the town.
We are also quite partial to stretching our legs out towards the Hythe and pondering the meaning of life down by the muddy banks of the Colne. You’d be surprised at some of the answers that the old port sometimes points back at us.
Which brings us to Hythe Forward and our shared hopes that this project can hopefully build something positive in the community. As a blog we operate by helping to connect hyperlocal issues with people both online and offline. We absolutely love it when co-operation is made around the streets of Sunny Colch through a shared purpose initially found via the modern interweb.
Hythe Forward now has a unique opportunity to achieve this and help define the future direction of the area. Already we are seeing those first early connections being made – Hythe Forward has helped to flush out the folk that genuinely care about their community.
The regeneration of the area is only half finished. This is something that we celebrate at The Chronic. The pace of change over the past fifteen years couldn’t be sustained. The cash ran out and the developers were left dangling their bait into the muddy banks with no bites for the one bedroom Buy to Lets.
Meanwhile, a mere hop and a skip over the beauty that is the tiara bridge and you see can a different reflection beaming down. The Buffalo Tank, the community of houseboats and the old houses along Hythe Hill – these have somehow managed to hang on against the march of progress, even flourishing where the Last Great Land Grab failed to reach the finish line.
Somewhere in the middle between the one bedroom Buy to Lets and the Buffalo Tank is the future for the Hythe. Not quite literally of course, but the Colne is the heartbeat of the Hythe and the connection that can pull all of this together.
Commercial development came too quickly, leading to the current stagnation. It was never going to be sustainable, but thankfully pockets of historical hyperlocal history remain untouched.
If Hythe Forward is going to have any success then it needs to harness this back to the future approach in order to help the area to breath naturally once again.
Sounds like some half hearted pitch by a sixth form social theorist?
But the previous attempts at helping the Hythe to move forward by Colchester Borough Council have failed. What is refreshing to see however is the commitment now by the local authority to try a new approach. Clipboards and online check boxes probably aren’t going to feature. Conversations and solutions come higher up the list.
Our main mantra at The Chronic is to celebrate the place in which we call home. Not everything is perfect around Sunny Colch right now, but there’s no point in making a list and them moaning about what might have been. You just do it. You just move… forward.
There is a sense that CBC has passed the buck on this one. But this has to be better than continually allowing the developers in through the back door and making all the demands. Speak with the residents, introduce them to the developers and hopefully try and find a shared interest.
Just don’t be too surprised when Hythe Forward comes up with the concept of the People’s Independent Republic of the Hythe.
As for the hyperlocal currency?
Cross our grubby palm with a Lighthouse fiver and we may just let it slip.
Careful what you wish for, Comrades.
Let’s move forward.