View from the Chair
Change is here to stay!
'Today our street is admired as one of the finest historic settings in Britain, a place where locals and tourists come to enjoy St Alban's charming cathedral quarter and to stroll among the Roman ruins of scenic Verulamium Park .'
Fishpool Street has seen many changes over the centuries. Not least the transformation from a quiet country lane in Saxon times to a bustling coach-stop on the main road north from London, and then to morph yet again with the rise of the railways 900 years later.
Today our street is admired as one of the finest historic settings in Britain, a place where locals and tourists come to enjoy St Albans’ charming cathedral quarter and to stroll among the roman ruins of scenic Verulamium Park.
Since its founding in 1974, the FSRA has seen its fair share of change, including the introduction in 2011 of an experimental 20mph speed limit and, more recently, with the pedestrianisation of nearby streets to support social distancing.
When the FSRA surveyed residents in early 2021, an overwhelming majority – 92 per cent – thought that retaining the extended pedestrianisation across the city centre post-Covid would be a good thing. And according to another poll by Herts County Council, a majority of St Albans people agree.
I’m reminded that back in 2011, it took the combined efforts of four residents’ associations, as well as the St Albans Civic Society and local councillors to lobby for the reduced 20mph speed
limit we enjoy today throughout the Conservation Area.
Press reports at the time lauded the campaigners’ efforts “to protect the character of a Conservation Area in St Albans”.
That’s one thing, at least, that doesn’t change. Today’s association continues with this aim, to protect and enhance the historic setting and natural environment we experience daily on our doorsteps.
And we will continue to cooperate with our neighbouring residents’ associations, and all like-minded people and interested parties, to help bring about the further changes that need to be made.
This will become all the more important in the next few years as the shift away from fossil fuels gathers pace and transforms how we heat our homes and power our motor vehicles.
Rest assured, whatever change awaits around the corner, the FSRA will be listening to the views of residents and seeking to represent the best interests of the street as a whole. Of that much, at least, we can be certain.
Clive Parish, FSRA Chair