The owners and developers of the shopping centre have proposed a doubling of the floor space, achieved by demolishing the bus station. The structure was always gloomy and once won an award as the building that people would most like to blow up. It is owned by Northampton Borough; the offices above it are empty and, ever desirous of making a substantial pot of filthy lucre, the council likes the idea. The plans give a rough idea of what is proposed.
Illustrated: Northampton in "the good old days" showing the three town centre bus stands. This is Abington Street but stands were similar in the Drapery. Today's Drapery is shown below with stops served by buses to and from Greyfriars; not standing there as they would in a bus station.
Of course, the government and all our noble local authorities have a well developed "green" agenda, stressing the importance of public transport, modal shift, integrated timetables, travel to work policies etc. etc. (blah blah blah.) All of this will happen, as soon as funding can be found; and provided that it does not offend the vocal private motorist lobby and thus lose votes. And making money from a shopping centre is so much better that having a bus station. Cynical, moi? Surely not!
Next blog : due Friday March 25th
P.S. fbb has "borrowed" the two pics of Derngate from the excellent "Memories of United Counties" published by Silver Link at £17.99. Go out and buy it! It's not the usual book about buses (although there are plenty to see), it's about the ordinary people who kept things on the move.