Campaigners call for residents to ‘make some noise’

Welcome to Bedlington sign with a boarded up shop in the background.

Welcome to Bedlington sign with a boarded up shop in the background.

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Frustrated residents have launched a campaign calling for more investment in Bedlington town centre.

Local resident Wendy Reed started the campaign on Facebook and has now been backed by hundreds of others exasperated at the way they believe the town is continually ignored.

‘Make a Noise for Bedlington’ now has more than 1,000 likes on the social media site while many more have also supported calls for more help for the town.

Wendy said: “Over the last few years we Bedlington folk have talked among ourselves about the plight of our town.

“Its lack of facilities, lack of investment and total lack of interest from the decision makers in doing anything to stop the decline of our beautiful little town.

“It’s all very well us complaining on social media and in letters to local press, but has anyone listened?

“Has anything been done to save Bedlington? Not as far as I can see.

“The town is in severe decline. I propose a peaceful, public rally in Bedlington to make it clear to the council that we are fed up with being the poor neighbour in south east Northumberland.”

A demonstration has been arranged for members of Make A Noise For Bedlington, on Saturday, May 2.

Wendy added: “All locals are encouraged to assemble in the Market Square at 11.45am on the Saturday to take part in a 15-minute cacophony that will begin as the St Cuthbert’s Church clock strikes 12.

“It is hoped that the publicity gained will help get the plight of Bedlington residents noticed, and that those in power will recognise the dissatisfaction.”

Steven Mason, lead executive director at Northumberland County Council said: “The council is fully committed to supporting regeneration and business growth in town centres and we are looking as a matter of urgency at future options for Bedlington.

“It was extremely disappointing that Tesco announced the closure of its Bedlington store, and we understand the concern amongst residents, businesses and community organisations.

“We are working actively, through Arch, to ensure that Bedlington town centre has the best possible opportunities for the future, including supermarket provision.”

Northumberland County Council has published a county wide blueprint for all town centres that aims to create access to modern, efficient and joined up council services as well as supporting regeneration.

In Bedlington proposals will see the current dated council offices building on Front Street demolished, and this prime location in the town centre made available for suitable development, subject to planning permission.

For more information on the ‘Make a Noise for Bedlington’ campaign, contact man4bedlington@gmail.com or visit www.facebook.com/MAN4Bedlington