9 January 2013

A continental Christmas

Mr Mustard offers his abject apologies for having failed to write anything since before Christmas. He had produced a fair amount during the year and needed a rest so he popped over to the continent for some warmer air. There is an excellent 3 part review of the year 2012 on the Mrs Angry of Broken Barnet blog, starting here.

He stayed a night or two in Orléans, in central France, to the south-west of Paris and situated on the Loire.

Mr Mustard is never really on holiday though and in this town of 150,000 he noticed things that he would like to see in Barnet.

His hotel was close to the main railway station and only 5 minutes walk from the main square and on the edge of the shopping district. From the hotel window Mr Mustard could see this car park.

It has beautiful tarmac which must have cost quite a lot and yet the car park was free of charge. Think how that improves the quality of life of the motorist and trade for local businesses.

The Christmas of lights in Barnet were not plentiful or very attractive. This is how they are in one road in Orléans.

That is only half of that street. The other half is the same.

It isn't the only decorated street either. There were lots. Here is one more.

You will have noticed the tram in the earlier picture. Cars & buses, pedestrians, cyclists and trams all got on happily together thanks to well designed road layouts. Lots to learn there for Barnet.

The town square had a thriving food market well into the evening. Below the town square was the usual multi level car park. Barnet has few squares and none of them have parking below as far as Mr Mustard is aware (think Cavendish Sq just off Oxford St). We really do need to see more imagination and investment from the council when it comes to how we live. There is a lot to learn from on the continent.

Following these musings, normal service will resume.

Yours frugally

Mr Mustard

1 comment:

  1. Orléans only got its trams in 2000, thanks to the vision of the local authority.


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