Tag Archives: meeting

Wednesday 22nd October – public meeting

Wednesday 22nd October sees the second – and potentially final – public meeting about the future of Nottingham’s whitewater course at Holme Pierrepont.

Those who could make it to the first meeting will know what to expect: a frank and open debate with no punches pulled.

This time you’ll get to see how the feedback from that first debate has been taken into account, and what the final plans look like. It’s your chance to quiz the user group, course designer and BCU on the thinking behind the proposal. And – most importantly of all – the meeting will decide what happens to the course at the start of November, when it’s scheduled to close for construction.

HPP whitewater course users’ meeting. HPP rugby club, Nottingham. 7pm, Wed 22nd Oct 2008. Directions here.

Changes to Nottingham’s Holme Pierrepont whitewater course – what’s the story?

I’ve been getting loads of calls and emails asking for a quick and dirty rundown of the story so far – so here goes…

In August, news leaked out that the whitewater course in Nottingham was going to shut down over the winter to turn it into a fast, shallow and even-gradient course for slalom canoe trainking. In fact, I might have had something to do with posting that information. The problem was that no-one had told the other people who use the course – like recreational paddlers, whitewater rafters, water safety and rescue training professionals, playboaters or wild water racers – let alone asked for their input.

So a handful of us got together to try and put over our opinion a little more forcefully. Emails, phone calls, message boards, facebook, blogs and the rest. Even a draft report (100kb PDF) to explain the needs and requirements of all the different users. We got support from nearly 600 paddlers – more than enough to call an Extraordinary Genreral Meeting of the BCU. It didn’t come to that, though, because by the end of August the BCU called a public meeting to quell speculation and present the plans.

How did the meeting go? Well, if you were there you won’t forget it. Tensions ran high among the 80 or so people who came along, and the discussion ranged from good-humoured to, well, strained… But by the end of the evening, there was a clear way forward.

It all came down to a user group – a handful of paddlers and course users who were happy to give their time and knowledge to the project to try and make sure that the project would turn out for the better. Working with Chris Hawkesworth, the BCU facilities manager, and Andy Laird, their design consultant who’s developed a complex computer model of the course, we’ve been meeting most weeks recently to try and make this project work.

Now it’s all coming to a head. We need to decide if these plans are working by the end of the month, and there’s a public meeting on Wednesday October 22nd in Nottingham to do that.

It’s at 7pm at the Rugby Club, behind the Peak UK shop at Holme Pierrepont (directions). If the course’s future matters to you, please do your best to come along and join us. I’ll post the plans up beforehand so we’ve got a good chance to get to grips with them first. And keep an eye on this blog for information in the meantime.

Consultation meeting tonight

This information came through from the BCU last week – sorry I’ve been too busy to get it up until now…

BRITISH CANOE UNION NOTICE

Subject Holme Pierrepont White Water ‘In’ Course Proposals
Time and date 6pm Monday 18th August 2008
Location “The Patio Lounge” at the National Watersports Centre,
Holme Pierrepont Nottingham
Invitees Open to all white water course users

Draft agenda
1. Welcome, Introductions and purpose
2. Presentation of draft proposals by Andy Laird of EPD Ltd
3. Presentations by users
4. Open forum
5. Summary and way forwards

The draft proposals will be put on the BCU web site and made available for others following the meeting.
A period of consulting will take place which will end 3rd September.

On behalf of Chris Hawkesworth
Planning and Facilities Manager

I’ll be there, and I’m sure I won’t be on my own. It’s open invite, so please do come along if you can.

Is two weeks long enough for full consultation? Who knows, but I’ll be pressing the point. I’ll also be taking messages of support for a versatile course and full consultation from 568 people, including 412 BCU members. I’ll make sure to get a full report up and online tomorrow. Chloe Nelson-Lawrie from the BCU has also promised to get the plans onto the BCU website for open consultation – I’ll put up a link when they go live.

Pete.