08:40 Friday 13th December 2013
BBC Radio Cambridgeshire
[P]AUL STAINTON: Back in March Waterbeach Barracks officially closed, marking the end of an era. The base in the South Cambridgeshire village was running for over seventy years, but that ended with Government cuts. Since then, local businesses have been suffering. Well our reporter Johnny Dee is in the village this morning, finding out how life has changed in Waterbeach.
JOHN DEVINE: Yes, I’ve been in the village of Waterbeach since about seven o’clock this morning. I’ve moved along now to the cosy surroundings of the Brewery Tap public house, which is right opposite where the Barracks used to sit. Now I actually managed to speak to three ladies at the bus stop, waiting to go on their daily commute into Cambridge earlier today.
PUBLIC ONE: It’s got a lot quieter. There are far fewer people around during the week. The school’s got fewer children. Some of the youth organisations are suffering, because the kids aren’t there. They’ve all moved off the Barracks.
PUBLIC TWO: I’ve been living here for a very very long time. The village has gone quieter, and as the lady said, businesses are suffering immensely. And we are hoping that we will get more people here so the businesses can start doing better.
JOHN DEVINE: Of course you are hoping to have houses on the site of Waterbeach Barracks.
PUBLIC TWO: Yes there are (plans).
JOHN DEVINE: But it’s going to take time though.
PUBLIC ONE: It will take time. Like everything else in life, it does take time. But we are hoping, aren’t we?
PUBLIC ONE: A lot of people think it’s going to ruin .. there are too many coming, and it’s going to completely swamp the village. So it’s a very controversial subject.
JOHN DEVINE: It’s a bit of a double-edged sword then really, isn’t it?
PUBLIC ONE: It is. Yes.
JOHN DEVINE: One one hand you want the people, but on the other hand you don’t want too many. Is that what you’re saying?
PUBLIC ONE: Yes I think so. I think the size of the planned development is too large. But I think we do need some development up there. We need people. We need more numbers.
PUBLIC THREE: That’s great if they get people in quite soon. And also if the facilities in the village can adapt or cope with that, as even the doctors, we can’t get in an appointment for a month at the moment. What’s going to happen when these people all come in?
JOHN DEVINE: I’ve got with me now councillor James Hockney. Now how do you plan to revive Waterbeach James?
Continue reading “Waterbeach – A Sense Of Optimism”