Chwech o sylwadau ar “(English) The Sharp End of the Brain Drain

  1. Are amongst the planning decisions you lament the one which bulldozed the old Central Station and put that shopping centre thing in its place? I’ve always found it odd that the Beeching era hatchet job left that piddly little ‘branch’ line there at all. Probably a view into the slapdash nature of the execution of one of the worst political decisions in British history, and the seemingly arbitrary approach taken to ‘redesigning’ the railway network, as evidenced by the many anomalies in its present day form.

    A good point on the contrast between Wrexham and its ‘siblings’ over the border. I often make a comparable one myself; why, with no real physicogeographical or administrative divide, are the border settlements either side like night and day when it comes to relative affluence?

    1. I see you know the town.

      When we moved there in 1981 (when I was 11 years old) all that was left of Central Station was a shelter in the middle of a car park; but all the old market halls were still standing, and the old shops around Lambpit Street and Henblas Street. The town had real character, and proper upmarket shops like The Bon menswear shop on Town Hill and the mens’ shoe shop nearby (I think Dodmans’ but I may be wrong). That’s all been obliterated now. The new buildings are of a much lower standard, architecturally and structurally, than the ones they replaced and the Eagles Meadow shopping centre, built out on a limb too far away from the town centre proper, has been dying on its feet for years and is probably done for if Debenhams pulls out, which seems likely. Architecturally it would make an excellent office block or an extension to the Technology Park, but it’s hard to see people investing in commercial property in a post-COVID economy where working from home has been proven to work so well.

      The town’s best hope is that it’s still a fabulous place to live with a real sense of community and a healthy cultural life, so if the future consists of more people working from home then hopefully it can keep its best and brightest from moving away and rediscover its role as a cultural hub for the wider region.

      1. I guess it’s just too far enough away to benefit from the current hip and happening scheme de jour in the North East, the Deeside Enterprise Zone, or whatever they call it?

        1. I’d never thought of the Deeside enterprise park in quite those terms. Wrexham’s economy is actually pretty diverse, though like most of Wales its weakness is that it’s mainly foreign-owned manufacturing plants rather than home-grown businesses, though there are a few of those. Quite a lot of industry in the area supplies Airbus at Broughton in one way or another, so I do worry about the effects of a prolonged downturn in the aviation industry post-COVID.

  2. Oh, another one for your tech guy, all comments seem to have 12:01 as the posted time.

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