Love in filton

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We spoke to traders and residents about their fears and hopes for their community. For the best daily news, up to our newsletter. You can get news straight to your inbox daily! Filton Avenue, a road that spans more than 4, metres and straddles the Bristol and South Gloucestershire border, still perplexes residents and businesses - as its central position is neither here nor there. Its wide street layout makes for any easy drive for motorists travelling through Horfield and Filton postcodes, from Muller Road to the A, and on to access key junctions including to n the M4, M5 and M Despite its convenient location meaning it is a busy thoroughfare, changes over the years have led to some people in the local community feeling forgotten about.

Those living in the area feel that Filton Avenue's authority lies with South Gloucestershire, while others say it's predominantly Bristol City Council. According to the Ordnance Survey map of boundaries, the road lies within Bristol until the junction with Eden Grove, beyond which it becomes South Gloucestershire.

But regardless of which local authority is responsible, many are concerned the area has lost its once hospitable culture and essential resources for youth and the elderly. Asa Henson, 49, has lived in the Bristol side all of her life and said she feels it has "gone downhill". Get the best stories about the things you love most curated by us and delivered to your inbox every day.

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She feels society as a whole is missing a certain level of chivalrous attitude toward the older generation, and recounts her younger days being a time where those less fortunate or incapable were helped by their neighbours. They have pulled so many resources from around here from the library to the youth clubs and there is just nothing for anybody to do," she added.

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Ms Henson said growing up she would see elderly people going to bingo as a way of socialising rather than feeling isolated at home. She has also witnessed children attending youth clubs. The single mum spoke of a lack of facilities for children with additional needs and for her, it's often challenging during the six week school holidays. Asa said due to privileges being cut, groups of children often gather during the late evenings out of boredom, which can appear intimidating to the elderly residents.

The Filton native believes more investment is needed in the area, and said if local authorities implemented more youth facilities in the area, kids would not roam the streets. Tony Matthews, a trustee and volunteer at Revive Charity shop on Filton Avenue, said since the shop was established in there have been many changes in the area.

He noted that Filton Avenue does straddle both Bristol and South Gloucestershire border and that there are two councils responsible as a result. He said having a charity shop business benefits the area, with people visiting out of need and sometimes out of loneliness, but he is unsure how well other businesses are likely to thrive.

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Mr Matthews said when the charity shop was set up, the area was mostly occupied by older people, but that a lot of student houses and homes in multiple occupation HMOs have taken over. The Filton ward is heavily populated with students, as it is in close proximity to UWE and South Gloucestershire and Stroud College, meaning many shared houses have sprung up in the area.

Earlier this year, councillors decided to block plans to create a shared home for eight people in Filton, saying there are too many HMOs in that part of north Bristol already. Filton Town Council chair Darryl Collins said the main difficulties with HMOs were parking, mess and litter, and untidy hedges and gardens. He said there are far too many and the area is "snowed under" as it is.

There have been three rejections to covert properties for multiple use on Northville Road in Filton so far this year and many objections from local residents has bee lodged against the proposals. InCity Council cabinet members approved a new policy which aimed to improve communities by restricting the of houses in multiple occupation HMOs where there are already 10 per cent or more in a neighbourhood.

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He said due to the high amount people have to venture outside the area to do their shopping, because there is not much on the street itself. Ms Henson also agreed that a local post office situated near the centre of Filton Avenue would benefit those residing in the Horfield region too. One of the streets includes Filton Avenue, where the funds will go toward developing a support programme for existing and new high street businesses while also funding improvements to the streets in a bid to boost footfall through them.

It will also provide financial support to new or expanding businesses and organisations to reduce the of vacant premises on the streets. This investment will help support some of the recovery, but we know that we have a lot more to do. On top of national closures and competition from online retailers, COVID restrictions have had a huge impact on our high street businesses. This will lead to stronger, resilient independent businesses that are valued and supported by their local communities.

Mohamad Hemed, Owner of Rahana 2 Butcher on Filton Avenue, believes the area will see a lot of developments in future and he is keen to capitalise on it. And having established his business three years ago, he now wants to expand his service to benefit the community.

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He thinks the street would benefit from a more diverse mix of shops such as a fruit and veg and convenience stores. Despite the street being served by two local authorities, he said this does not affect how the community acts towards each other. Bristol Live has also approached Bristol City Council for a comment. By Shashana Brown Multimedia Journalist. Video Loading Video Unavailable. Click to play Tap to play. The video will auto-play soon 8 Cancel Play now. Invalid Something went wrong, please try again later. This may include adverts from us and 3rd parties based on our understanding.

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