Can the proposed eco-education centre really be justified?

Broadland District Council aim to spend £600,000 so that, between 2010 and 2013,  people in and around Rackheath  will better understand the eco-community and local schools can promote the eco-community and what it stands for. (See this paper setting out the proposals)

Surely in the country's current economic state BDC should not be using tax payers' money  to promote the proposed eco-community and it also sounds rather sinister to suggest that local school children should also be used for this purpose!

According to this paper "local communities, the local press and the nation as a whole struggle with what an "Eco Community" comprises. It is important to educate and demonstrate to all members of the Rackheath and wider community what the "Eco" designation for the development is trying to achieve".

The concept it NOT rocket science and it is rather arrogant of BDC to suggest that we need educating in this way. Whoever thought up the idea of transporting bus loads of school children across the county to an industrial estate to explain the merits of living in an eco-community? Hardly an environmentally friendly exercise in itself.

BDC suggest that they will be bringing new jobs to the area but by building such a centre on an industrial estate they are effectively removing an opportunity for a business to operate and provide a lot more jobs than this proposed education centre states it will provide.


  1. Incredible! If BDC have such a clear understanding themselves of what an Eco Community is, and specifically, what it means for the Rcakheath area, why can't they just produce a document explaining themselves and circulate to all local residents etc? They could then make themselves available to respond to questions (in the spirit of democracy)!

  2. Come on John, you know that would mean that they would get more opposition. Sneak it under the wire, that is the strategy! My son has to go into a mixed age group class next year because his school's budget has been cut and they cant afford a teacher for each age group. Shame the council aren't making funds available to schools for more important issues on a day to day basis. Still, I don't suppose it's actually possible to transfer the funding across to Norfolk County Council is it? No, far too complicated! Well at least he may get an afternoon at the eco-con education centre. I will make sure he is well informed before he goes as to the lack of eco credentials the scheme actually has! Oh no, wait! He isn't actually at one of the schools that will benefit which are Acle High, Notre Damn High and Hellesdon High and their primary schools!!!

  3. If Broadland were serious they would spend the money building Starter Units on the Estate to HELP small businesses, not a Propaganda Centre for their stupid Ecotown. Still this is what the Developers want and Broadland MUST obey.

  4. You have misunderstood Broadland District Council’s approach to stimulating economic recovery using public money. And indeed the source of the money, and the use we are allowed to put that money to. The money to fund the Eco-education centre was awarded by the previous government in response to our bid for funding for projects that would support economic growth and create sustainable low carbon projects to benefit our communities in and around Rackheath, the Rackheath Programme of Development. The money is therefore ring-fenced for that purpose.
    Broadland is looking to the future, recognising that economic recovery will need new jobs to sustain it. Those new jobs in many cases will need more, and sometimes different, skills. Far from being a waste of public money the proposed Education facility at Rackheath is an investment in Broadland’s future and part of a wider strategy to ensure that our businesses and residents are equipped to respond to the opportunities and challenges of the future, such as the emerging green technologies.

  5. Richard Williams26 July 2010 at 08:19

    If that is the first idea that comes into the Deputy Leaders when he considers investment for the future, we should be worried.
    This scheme provides a few more council jobs but worryingly is targeting children.
    The Council seems to be setting itself up to push its own agenda into the education system. This cannot be right whatever the motive and, frankly this one is dubious to say the very least.
    You might say it is no worse than religious leaders promoting the inequality of academies but that does not make it right.
    This is not why we pay hard earned money, they should be providing services. Why should we pay to promote the agenda of a few Broadland Councillors. They are not representing us, they are merely telling us what they are going to do.
    No doubt the next use of this money will be to begin a massive PR campaign to garner support for their fatally flawed development plans which are not supported locally.
    What is worse, this government far from bringing Labour plans to a crashing halt are encouraging the creation of local despots as their alternative.
    Proctor said we want you to be involved in "Shaping the Future". That was only if you agree with what they are doing. Remember the Rackheath Programme Board?
    OR the "Vocal Local" campaign by the EDP. These are just sops to the mantra of community involvement.