Progress ? ? ?
Many articles regarding the old Laindon, as we knew it, describe it as “not a pretty place”. I wouldn’t disagree with this but would describe it myself as rustic with a charm and character all of its own, loved by many. Would the planners and developers have the nerve and effrontery to describe their creation that is now Laindon as pretty I wonder? What wonderful successes they had with many of these developments! The “Siporex” estate for example, wow! Didn’t that do well? The “Five Links” estate was yet another roaring success wasn’t it? Not forgetting the Laindon Shopping Centre, surely this was instantly recognisable as being pretty?
It seems to me that the “planners” forgot one thing and that was to plan. The shopping centre was given over, by the Basildon Development Corporation, to private ownership in the 1970s. The expression, “rats leaving a sinking ship” comes to mind. And didn’t the private ownership company really look after the centre, keeping it well maintained and looking “pretty”? I wonder just how many more areas that were created in and around Basildon will need to be demolished as failures to then have some other characterless blob erected in their place. Oh dear, what price “progress”. Is it any wonder that so many Laindoners moved away to other areas, both near and far. Thank God for memories and websites such as this one.