Friday, 12 January 2018

Wychavon District Council to build car park at Broadway

Wychavon District Council to build car park at Broadway
Dear supporters of the GWSR,

I am delighted to be able to tell you that Wychavon District Council (Wychavon) approved the construction of a car park at Broadway at their executive meeting on Wednesday 10 January 2018. The funds were allocated to the project and the chief executive was given authority to acquire the land from us and build the car park. Privately I have been advised that it should be open by August 2018.
The details of the deal we have done with them are straightforward; we transfer the ownership of the land on the west side of the railway between Broadway Road and Childswickham Road to Wychavon and they build a car park for which they receive the income from parking fees. The board has agreed that part of the cost of parking will be refunded to our passengers who commence their journey at Broadway.
Although I realize that giving up assets, land in this case, can be controversial, the GWSR board felt that, as the railway have neither the funds to build a car park nor the expertise to manage the planning and highways approval processes, it was therefore decided that this was the pragmatic way to proceed with this part of the Broadway extension project – I do hope you all agree.

You may well be interested to view the Wychavon meeting and, in particular, car park decision by clicking on Wychavon.public-i.tv. The session relevant to us starts at the 27th minute. What I think you will find remarkable and gratifying is the overwhelming support the various Wychavon council members give to the railway, their recognition of our contribution to tourism and their desire to work with us in the future. To my mind the support of local authorities and communities is vital to our railway’s long term success.

Best wishes for 2018!
Chris
Chris Bristow

GWSR Finance Director

19 comments:

  1. Well done board and Whychavon, good work all round.
    Graham

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  2. Although I am never keen on the sale of railway land I think in this instance it is a good solution to the parking problem for the station and now it will get done in a reasonable time scale and with the price reduction for traveling on the railway what better incentive

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  3. Will access to the track bed continue to be available to PWay etc through the car park as now?

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  4. So long as the council don't outsource the management of that car-park to one of those rapacious companies.........

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  5. Good deal for the railway,marvellous!

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  6. Exellent news ,this will help us to welcome tourists this year with parking close to the Station , I hope that the Broadway project can now be completed sooner. john M.

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  7. I am very pleased to hear of the car park future, although I would recommend that a clause be included in the sale to restrict such sale to building a car park ONLY, as I have seen councils manipulate land sales for secret agendas. Here's hoping that all goes alright. Regards, Paul.

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    1. Paul, Councils are generally capital funds rich (for one off projects)and revenue (day to day) poor the chance of a relatively cheap peice of land for a sound revenue stream makes this a great opportunity for the council. Graham

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    2. Such a Clause could, and should, be inserted into the Contract prior to the Transfer of Ownership, as the solicitors to GWSR can confirm.

      Peter Wright

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    3. A clause of easement will make sure GWSR have always access to their track bed.

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  8. That is a very smart move. Congratulations all round. To get Wychaven on board is excellent.
    Mike Rose.

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  9. Very good news, but I have to agree with previous comments, the car park must not be allowed in future to have any buildings on it and it must not be run by a parking service that hands out fines at an extortionate rate for minor infringements. Otherwise this could be bad publicity for the line. We have seen this happen before and been fined £60 because the disabled badge was the wrong way round! and no amount of appeals were accepted, hence we no longer go there, I now drop him off and park further away and twice I was 10 minutes late but was told "don't worry it happens". great news though for Broadway and the station.
    Regards
    Paul & Marion.

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  10. What is to stop the railway being appointed by Wychavon to rent back the car park and set the parking charges, to avoid a private car park management company getting its claws into it. Like supermarkets the fee could be refunded if spending a certain amount on fares. There should also be a covenant put on the land at sale to prevent any use other than for a car park, plus have the board made any provision in the sale terms that will allow them the option to purchase the car park from the council, under an agreed price structure, once sufficient funds become available to do this. This often happens, especially with such as Leeds United who have sold their ground a number of times and then bought it back under a clause in the sale terms. David P

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    1. Is David P thinking in terms of a restrictive Covenant on the land ? Good thinking, but it would have to be put in place prior to transfer of Title. And, of course, Wychavon Council might not agree.

      In any case, a good lawyer would probably be able to find several ways round such a covenant: you know, such as the covenant had ceased to be relevant, or had become unenforceable. This argument would normally be used only after a considerable length of time and usually would apply to old buildings (usually listed) which no longer serve their original purpose, but it could also apply to a parcel of land. All I can say to this is "Caveat vendor".

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    2. A covenant can be watertight for 50 years, as I have found to my cost over the last 12 months during sale of our property with outline planning for development with six dwellings. An old National Coal Board covenant of 1968 came to light that precluded anything but wooden agricultural buildings being erected on the land. The Coal Authority needed test drilling to satisfy them as to the integrity of the land, and they then required a large sum of money, due to its current deemed value from now having planning permission, in order for them to agree to release the covenant.

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  11. The devil is in the detail though. Previous posts talk about the land being sold to the council - but is it? The Board item states "we transfer the ownership of the land on the west side of the railway between Broadway Road and Childswickham Road to Wychavon and they build a car park for which they receive the income from parking fees" No mention of a sale, which seems to be an assumption by some, the report just states that ownership of the land is transferred to the council.

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  12. This should be a good move for the GWSR so long as its position regarding land use is safeguarded but well done to the board for negotiating with Wychavon Council regarding this idea!

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  13. If an easement is added to the transfer of ownership which will give GWSR permanent access to their tack bed, then Wychavon District Council will always allow access and not be able to build to obstruct this.
    Many years ago a land owner gave a parcel of land to the church to build a school which the condition it remained for that purpose. Hundred or so years later the school closed and it became part of a nursery. When the nursery moved out, the school had to be sold and the proceeds given to the descendants of the original land owners. It took a number of years for the solicitors to sort this out. Some of the descendants has a pleasant surprise windfall who lived in Australia.

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  14. It sounds initially like a good idea but just how much planning and highways planning costs are we talking about here?
    Better to keep the land in private ownership rather than release it. No one mentions how many spaces there will be for cars. Which I find a bit odd. Did this fairly obvious statistic disappear from sight?

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