What’s happening with “The Wheat Quarter”?

Wheat Quarter Welwyn Garden City

The unloved factory as it appears from Bridge Road

With only a couple of weeks to go until the towns centenary year and celebrations things seemed to have ground to a halt in the development of the former Shredded Wheat site. Hopes were high that the new landowners would get on with redeveloping the site for 2020, in fact their vision statement set out in their document “Delivering the Wheat Quarter, January 2018” boldly stated:

“The vision for The Wheat Quarter is to deliver a unique destination for people to live, work and spend their leisure time. The redevelopment of the former Shredded Wheat Factory community elements is due to complete in 2020, which coincides with Welwyn Garden City’s centenary year in which the town will be celebrating its origins in the Garden City Movement.”

However, the dilapidated factory remains a paint peeling eyesore. There seems to be no news as to when this will change. Here are a few pictures taken very recently (Mid December 2019), click on them to enlarge:

Shreeded Wheat The Wheat Quarter WGC

Will visitors to the town for the centenary be greeted with this when they arrive at the train station or drive in over Hunters Bridge? Will we residents have to go on looking at this derelict behemoth?

Our Society hopes that the factory will receive the love and attention we were told it was going to get by the new owners when they took on the site. The landowners originally said the work will complete in 2020 but it hasn’t begun as far as we can see, what a sad state of affairs! We hope that our Borough Council is also pushing to get things underway asap. Planning consent was granted some time ago now,  since then the developers have sought to revise it, scaling back on some of what was originally proposed.  The town deserves better in its centenary year, when it will be getting a lot more attention, and many more visitors. This remains a memorable building, but for all the wrong reasons.

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