I AM writing to object very strongly to the overdevelopment of Ealing Broadway town centre.
I first moved here 20 years ago because Ealing had a wonderful mix of shops, delis, cafés, restaurants, pubs etc. It has changed dramatically since then. Over the years I have met and become friends with many Ealing families, through nurseries, schools, football, tennis, rugby etc. Most of them no longer use Ealing town centre as it doesn't cater for our needs - it has lost its charm and sense of community. We now find ourselves driving to Brent Cross, Richmond, or Chiswick to provide the services we require.
Over the past few months the town centre has become a ghost town, with flagship stores moving out and being replaced by pound shops, casinos, and Primark. We live in Ealing and pay our council tax here with very little in return. The people who have been shopping in Ealing over the past few years and increasingly in recent months do not reside in the area. The retailers, developers and it appears the council have no affinity with the town. If they did they would not allow it to spiral downwards as it has been doing.
We do not need new buildings twice the height of the existing buildings. We require the character of the town to return i.e. investment in good flagship stores, restaurants etc. Conserve the existing buildings. What is to happen to the existing Broadway shopping Centre?
It just needs some modernisation, nothing a good architect could not solve. We don't want another Croydon on our hands - nor can we compete with the shops in White City. Why cannot Ealing become more similar to Richmond, or Chiswick, where there are high street shops but also good quality ones and decent one-off individually owned stores offering services that we require? It might be worth the council subsidising the rents for these one-off shops as opposed to endorsing huge building projects which will no doubt date very quickly and change the character of this once Queen of Suburbs.