When ten outstanding individuals received Service to Farnham awards, one of our favourite residents was in the line-up.
The Farnham Herald dubbed David Wylde as a:
‘A True Citizen of Farnham who invests time and effort ensuring the town remains vibrant and retains its character.”
It failed to mention that for many years, he has also been a thorn in the side of Waverley Borough Council. He, along with others, fought the Tory administration over decades to stop the demolition of Farnham’s Redgrave Theatre and the Marlborough Head pub – as well as opposing the Brightwells Development on East Street. A scheme that has now been delayed and delayed and which Crest Nicholson now hope to open in June 2022.
Waverley councillors heard recently from Cllr Andy Macleod, the Portfolio Holder for Development, that Crest is confident that it will have let the retail units by then, and the sale of the residential flats was now also going well.
It is now over two months since they held a fanfare event to promote the scheme and, the developer in conversation with others said it was confident that there would be a 75% occupancy of the restaurant and retail outlets.
Said Mr Wylde:
“As we have witnessed in the past empty vessels sound the loudest. The whole place looks pretty awful and building work is grinding slowly due to the lack of a workforce. I would take what the developer says with a large barrel of salt any promises it has made many times before. I will be very very surprised if it opens next June 2022 – after all wasn’t it supposed to be open at Easter 2022 and Autumn 21?”
Residents claim many of the flats are buy-to-let investments; no surprise there then! In the first tranch, one person bought two flats, and others are buying two apartments at a time.
Existing Farnham businesses claim that Crest Nicholson has offered them two years rent-free, but their generous offers have, in the main, been refused.
“When you talk to people they say in a shocked voice.’ I never in my wildest dreams thought Brightwells would be so big.’ Although it is not easy to see into block D6, the block that was recently unveiled overlooking East Street, shouldn’t it be called Breeze Box D6? We were shocked to see the scale of the appalling legacy we will all have to live with. As it now reaches its full height the full awfulness of the place is now becoming apparent.”