Opinion

Poundbury is not the utopian dream we were promised. Here's why

A reader and Poundbury resident responds to our recent article on King Charles's experimental town, to tell us what it's really like to live there

Aerial view of poundbury

An aerial view of Poundbury. Photo: Duchy of Cornwall

As a fairly recent resident of Poundbury I can concur with most of the positives regarding the experience of living in this town. However, the one negative reality which cannot be overlooked (and is a growing concern to many of us) is that although the buildings may look beautiful, sadly beauty is only skin deep. Both the building materials, and some of the building practices, leave a great deal to be desired and are not fit for purpose.

Perhaps Mr Geraghty failed to see the amount of scaffolding that is ever present, or the amount of rotting windows and doors that are in evidence. Weeds are growing everywhere and, according to my neighbours who have lived here for considerably longer that I have, this is a recent occurrence. Personally, our windows are a disgrace – we have to stuff them with cardboard to stop the rattling but not the draughts and they are too heavy for me to open (probably owing to the amount of water they have soaked up as, according to one of the numerous handymen, they were left lying out in the rain for weeks before being installed). 

We have just replaced our front door as the splits allowed the sun to shine straight through. Thirty years ago, not using PVC was pertinent, but the world and technology has moved on. Modern composite materials can now be recycled, but rotten wood can only be burnt or put into landfill. Rules are a two-way contract and we expected our house to be built to a higher standard. One lady recently told me that the term ‘Poundbury Build’ stands for ‘well what did you expect’.

Pam of Poundbury

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