The New Town Story of Basildon

Soon after the Second World War, London became overcrowded and the local government was looking for an effective method to overcome the negative effects linked with it. As a result, they thought of resettling the crowd in new towns. This took place in between 1946 and 1951. Basildon was transformed into a new town along with this initiative.

Basildon was officially promoted to a new town back in 1948. Along with this announcement, the Minister of Town and Country Planning, Lewin Silkin made an official announcement saying that he want to make it a city that welcomes people from every corner of the world. In other words, he wanted to transform this into an ideal community, where people from all classes can come together and interact with each other freely. In order to facilitate it, common cultural recreational facilities were also introduced.

The Development Corporation of the town was established in 1949. The primary objective of the Development Corporation was to transform the pre-identified area into a modern town. As per the master plan, it was expected to receive a total population of 80,000. However, the figures were later revised to 106,000.

The Development Corporation gave special attention towards creating an industrial area in Nevendon. The first ever factory of Nevendon was established during 1951. This industrial area experienced a boost in development when some of the big names such as Ford Motor Company and Bonnllack Coachbuilders came in.

Some of the areas in this city needed extensive drainage in order to handle the landscape. One such area was transformed into the Gloucester Park.

Some established schools were there in Basildon before it transformed into a new town during 1949.  However, these schools were not in a position to cater the increasing population. As a result, Swan Mead Junior and Infant School was opened during 1954. It was followed by the Whitemore School. Two other second Grammar schools, named Fryerns Grammar and Technical School and Barstable Technical School were established after few years.

The roads in the town experienced a significant development after the 1950s. However, the railway over bridges found in Shelley Road and Woottens Lane were closed due to the emergence of the town center. Moreover, all the roads that existed in the area were completely rebuilt. That’s because the roads needed to be widened to provide enhanced access to the people who are coming in and going out of the town.

By 1949, there were 300 different shops in the area. Most of the shops in the area were concentrated around the Langdon Hills and High Road at Laindon. The newly emerged shops were scattered in all parts of the town. The Basildon market was established in 1965 and it multiplied the number of shops that can be found in the area. In fact, it brought 150 new shops into the area. This contributed a lot towards the development of the area as well.

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