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Coleshill house: Grandmother, 58, complains lorries on the A466 ‘shake’ her £350,000 ‘dream’ home

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A grandmother who bought a £350,000 new-build home just nine feet from a busy 70mph A-road has complained that passing lorries cause her house to ‘constantly shake’.

Jackie McCormack, 58, and her husband moved into the ‘absolutely beautiful’ detached three-bed home in Coleshill, near Birmingham, at the end of February.

They viewed the home seven times before deciding to buy, but Mrs McCormack says each visit was early on a Saturday morning before the busy A446 had ‘woken up’.

After moving in they soon realised the thundering of cars and lorries could be heard on weekdays between 5.30am and 8.30pm, while at weekends boy racers roared past at speeds of up to 100mph until the early hours.

‘It was absolutely horrendous,’ she said. ‘I know it’s a really important road but it’s impacting our mental health.’

Mrs McCormack. who works as a Follow-on Advocate for disability charity People In Partnership, says she does not blame the estate agent, but if the viewings had been at 2pm ‘we wouldn’t have touched it with a barge pole’.

Now she is campaigning for the council to install crash barriers and reduce the speed limit to 40mph so her grandson is safe to play in the garden.

Jackie McCormack (pictured in her garden), 58, moved into the 'absolutely beautiful' detached three-bed home in Coleshill, near Birmingham, at the end of February

Jackie McCormack (pictured in her garden), 58, moved into the ‘absolutely beautiful’ detached three-bed home in Coleshill, near Birmingham, at the end of February

She said she and her husband spent their first night in the house, which borders the A446 Lichfield Road, on a Friday but by the next morning the noise 'was absolutely horrendous'. Pictured, a lorry travels along the road nine feet from Mrs McCormack's garden fence

She said she and her husband spent their first night in the house, which borders the A446 Lichfield Road, on a Friday but by the next morning the noise ‘was absolutely horrendous’. Pictured, a lorry travels along the road nine feet from Mrs McCormack’s garden fence

Thundering of commuting cars and lorries could be heard weekdays between 5.30am and 8.30pm. On weekends boy racers roared past at speeds of up to 100mph until the early hours, Mrs McCormack said. Pictured, the house borders the road

Thundering of commuting cars and lorries could be heard weekdays between 5.30am and 8.30pm. On weekends boy racers roared past at speeds of up to 100mph until the early hours, Mrs McCormack said. Pictured, the house borders the road

They initially put in an offer on a four-bedroom new build on the same estate priced at £375,000, but changed their mind when a three-bed came up for £25,000 less. 

The average cost of homes in Coleshill is £233,624, according to Rightmove, although the majority are flats and terraced homes. 

Mrs McCormack and her husband, who is not named, spent their first night in the house, which borders the A446 Lichfield Road, on a Friday and by the next morning realised the extent of the problem. 

Despite setting the garden up with a goal post for her grandson, she added: ‘My garden’s a no go area and I think it always will be, unless they reduce that speed, it’s too much of a danger. 

‘I wouldn’t allow my grandson to play outside, it’s too scary. It’s the speed at which the juggernauts go past, it’s the speed of the racers, they’re doing wheelies, it’s absolutely shocking. 

‘I didn’t realise there was an injunction regarding boy racers on the A446, they don’t take any notice of it,’ she added, revealing she had not researched the area before making the move.

The A446, also known as Lichfield Road, runs to the north east of Birmingham in the West Midlands and acts as the city's main bypass, allowing traffic to move smoothly around the metropolitan

The A446, also known as Lichfield Road, runs to the north east of Birmingham in the West Midlands and acts as the city’s main bypass, allowing traffic to move smoothly around the metropolitan

Mrs McCormack wants the council to install crash barriers and reduce the speed limit to 40mph so her grandson is safe to play in the garden. Pictured, the house is circled

Mrs McCormack wants the council to install crash barriers and reduce the speed limit to 40mph so her grandson is safe to play in the garden. Pictured, the house is circled

‘The [boy racers] started at 11am on the Saturday and went right the way through to 4am on Sunday, hitting speeds of 90 – 100mph.

‘On the Monday, it started with the heavy good vehicles – my house was constantly shaking. You don’t get any respite at all, it’s relentless. It’s like living next to a motorway.

The couple now have to wear earplugs to bed and wash their windows up to four times a week because of the dust

The couple now have to wear earplugs to bed and wash their windows up to four times a week because of the dust

‘There’s lights and every now and again you get a sway of the HGV vehicles, my fence is 9ft away from the edge of the A446.’ 

The A446, also known as Lichfield Road, runs to the north east of Birmingham in the West Midlands and acts as the city’s main bypass, allowing traffic to move smoothly around the metropolitan. 

But pollution from the road is so severe Mrs McCormack says she could write her name in the dust that travels through her converter fan to settle in her en suite.

Last year the couple decided to move from their large Victorian home in Kings Heath because they dreamed of living in a detached property.  

‘We absolutely fell in love with the house,’ she said. ‘I was in a beautiful Victorian house but I thought we always wanted a detached house, and we jumped at it and I wish we could just go back.

‘[The new house] was perfect for us. It was a little bit smaller, it was closer to where my husband works at Rolls Royce in Solihull.’

The couple now have to wear earplugs to bed and wash their windows up to four times a week because of the dust.

She said: ‘The HGVs are absolutely horrendous, and the pollution that comes out of them, it’s disgraceful.

‘I’m washing my windows three or four times a week, it’s disgusting. If the pollution is going onto our windows and our cars, what are we breathing in?’  

She denied accusing the estate agent of 'duping' her, but added: 'If it had been about 2pm, we would have said "what the hell" and we wouldn't have touched it with a barge pole.' Pictured, the house during construction

She denied accusing the estate agent of ‘duping’ her, but added: ‘If it had been about 2pm, we would have said “what the hell” and we wouldn’t have touched it with a barge pole.’ Pictured, the house during construction

She is now lobbying Warwickshire County Council, which is responsible for the road, for stronger safety measures – including a 40mph limit across the 2624-foot stretch of road lined with houses.

She said: ‘I’m going to fight to the nail to get this sorted out. I’m not moving, I can’t move because nobody would buy the house. 

‘They’ve said they haven’t had any crashes in years, but I’m not prepared to take that risk. They have to reduce the speed, they have to.’

She said she ‘absolutely fell in love’ during several viewings which all took place on Saturday mornings.

‘It’s a beautiful property. But I think because it was so close to the road, no wonder they dropped it by £25,000. Anyway, we went out and had a look at it on a number of occasions, absolutely beautiful, we moved in and it all started from there.

‘I’m not saying we were duped, I think they [estate agents] should have been a little more forthcoming with the times they were allowing us to come see.

‘If it had been about 2pm, we would have said “what the hell” and we wouldn’t have touched it with a barge pole. 

‘I’m not blaming the planners [either], but how they got planning permission to build a house so close to the road, I will never know.’

Warwickshire County Council said it was aware of the problem and will consider 'very carefully' whether to recommend possible solutions. Pictured, Mrs McCormack and the road

Warwickshire County Council said it was aware of the problem and will consider ‘very carefully’ whether to recommend possible solutions. Pictured, Mrs McCormack and the road

She revealed her neighbours, who bought houses further away from the road, also feel the rumbling and cannot open their windows because of the noise and dirt.

She added: ‘My neighbour says: “Jackie, I wish I could turn back the hands of time, because I would never have bought this house”.

‘My worry is there should be a speed limit of 40mph because of the residential estate, it’s not just one house here there’s several houses going on the stretch of this road and it’s only a small stretch of the A446.’ 

Warwickshire County Council said it is aware of the problems and will consider ‘very carefully’ whether to recommend possible solutions.

A spokesperson said: ‘A meeting is currently being arranged with various stakeholders to discuss this.

‘Obviously, there is no guarantee that it will be possible to provide any measures, but we will consider the issues raised very carefully and aim to recommend possible solutions.’ 

MailOnline has contacted the estate agents for comment. 

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Barings and HBD secure planning for London logistics scheme (GB)

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Barings and HBD have secured detailed planning for a strategic logistics scheme in Rainham, London, transforming a 20-acre brownfield site. The new development, Momentum London, is being delivered by Barings and HBD in a joint venture partnership. It will create 381,814ft² of new logistics and industrial space across four units ranging from 41,000 -171,000ft².

 

The scheme will target Net Zero Carbon, BREEAM “Excellent” and an EPC “A+” rating. This is being achieved by dynamic design, careful consideration of materials, zero use of fossil fuels, maximizing photovoltaic solar panels, battery storage and intelligent building systems. The units will be 100% EV ready, including passive fleet charging to the yards.

 

The logistics park will be set in landscaped environment with picnic and public areas, as well as direct access onto the Thames Cycle Path, so that it brings further social benefits to the area. Positioned on the River Thames, with potential for jetty access, Momentum will offer an easy stepping stone into Central London and out via the A13, just minutes away.

 

Darren Hutchinson, Head of UK Real Estate Transactions and Managing Director at Barings, said: Momentum London will be a strategically located logistics scheme with strong environmental and social credentials, beneficial both to future occupiers and the communities around it. Logistics is one of Barings’ preferred investment sectors and Momentum London exemplifies the kind of developments we’re seeking, with a keen interest in exploring joint ventures like this one with HBD.”

 

Simon Quine, Senior Development Surveyor at HBD, said: “Industrial and logistics space remains in very limited supply across London, particularly larger distribution units. Momentum will plug that gap within the M25 and provide modern, sustainable logistics and distribution space to serve London and the wider South East market. Landscaping and wellness have been thoroughly considered, with careful design considerations and enhancements to the Thames Foot and Cycle path, which we hope will help occupiers to attract and retain staff.”

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Mirrored furniture trend can create the illusion of space in your home

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Mirrored furniture provokes strong emotions. Some see it as the epitome of bad taste, flashy and bling. Others know that mirrors have magic powers.

A mirrored table or cabinet makes a room or a hallway appear more swish and spacious. It’s a trick that bars and restaurants employ to ensure their establishments appear roomier and more inviting — and they can add lustre to your home, too.

Choosing a piece of mirrored furniture also sends out a sign that you are aware of one of the year’s trends — the return of Art Deco, the influential style that emerged in the 1920s. 

Reflections: A mirrored bedside table. The power of the mirror to create an impression has been recognised for centuries

Reflections: A mirrored bedside table. The power of the mirror to create an impression has been recognised for centuries

It blended forms that celebrated modern machinery with decorative elements drawn from Greco-Roman culture and nature. 

The mirror was a favourite material, used on the surfaces of furniture and walls to supply a shimmering silver and gold effect.

Probably the most famous piece of Art Deco architecture is New York’s Chrysler Building. Completed in 1930, its sunburst-patterned stainless steel spire remains one of the key elements of the Manhattan skyline.

Art Deco console tables, drinks trolleys and other items from the era of the building’s construction sell for thousands on auction sites such as 1stdibs underlining the growing appeal of this aesthetic. 

Jamie Watkins, the co-founder of fabric and wallpaper company Divine Savages, explains Art Deco’s allure for a new audience.

‘Art Deco, with its bold geometrical patterns was such an iconic period for design: it’s synonymous with glamour and luxury.’

The resurgent popularity of Art Deco is also based on its practicality: a mirrored piece works with almost any interior, adding interest and depth.

The power of the mirror to create a wow impression has been recognised for centuries. 

Examples of this technique include the round mirror on the wall behind the bride and groom in Jan van Eyck’s 1434 Arnolfini Portrait in the National Gallery. It sends out the message that the couple are discerning — and wealthy.

Cheers: B&M's £25 oval drinks trolley with two mirrored shelves

Cheers: B&M’s £25 oval drinks trolley with two mirrored shelves

The hall of mirrors in the palace of Versailles was designed to be a place of beauty, but also to display the financial resources of Louis XIV, the Sun King. Mirrors were a luxury item until an inexpensive manufacturing process was invented in the 1830s.

In 2022, it is possible to pick up mirrored pieces for under £100. B&M has a £25 oval drinks trolley with two mirrored shelves that would lend an air of Thirties elegance to any gathering. The £94.99 Ellison serving cart (a U.S. term for drinks trolley) from Wayfair has a similar vibe.

If you believe that the right mirrored trolley would save you money on trips to bars, the larger £144.95 gold oval mirrored trolley from Melody Maison could be the thing.

A mirrored cocktail cabinet will dazzle guests. The £1,200 Primrose & Plum champagne and gold cabinet has a Jazz-Age feel.

The £299 Venetian sideboard from Furniture Market, meanwhile, is a more modestly priced way to conjure up the party spirit of the Roaring Twenties.

The show flats of apartment blocks are often equipped with mirrored cocktail cabinets containing bottles of spirits and crystal glasses. This makes buyers dream of dinner parties, with a prelude of aperitifs, but also serves to make the apartment appear even roomier.

A console table in the hall also creates an illusion of space which can be amplified by the addition of a lamp. HomesDirect365 has a range in the style of almost every era including Art Deco, Regency, the 1960s and the 1970s. Prices start at £233.

The bedroom is often the most cramped room in either a house or flat which is why this can be the best place to experiment with mirrored furniture. 

The desire to preserve family harmony is another reason. The other members of your household may prefer the kitchen and living room to be slick and understated, seeing anything mirrored as excessive.

In the bedroom, however, you can indulge your decor fantasies. Habitat has the one-drawer Hepburn bedside table for £76.

Next offers the antique effect Fleur bedside table which costs £225 for the one-drawer version and £275 for the two-drawer version. 

The Fleur is also available as a six-drawer chest for £599 or a £1,150 double wardrobe if you seek to waft around your bedroom channelling your inner 1930s Hollywood screen siren. 

Dunelm’s Venetian mirrored dressing table also offers a chance to live out your dream of silver screen stardom (£449).

If mirrored furniture has brought out your party animal, kindling a passion for Art Deco in every guise, Divine Savages offers Deco Martini wallpaper whose design is based on the geometric forms, with a hidden Martini glass within the print (£150 per roll).

Some of your guests may not be too busy checking out their reflections on the doors of the mirrored cabinet to notice this subtle and witty detail in the wallpaper.

Savings of the week! water jugs… Up to 52% off 

The Sandvig hammered-glass jug from made.com is half-price at £22

The Sandvig hammered-glass jug from made.com is half-price at £22

Sitting outside on a sunny afternoon is already delightful. But it is even more enjoyable if you are sipping on a cool drink or an iced coffee from a generously sized jug, or maybe even a Pimm’s. The arrival of the July sales means bargains abound.

If you prioritise practicality, Ocado’s textured lustre plastic picnic jug has 33 per cent off at £8.

The price of the pleasingly geometric plastic smoky-grey Prism jug from Wayfair is 16 per cent off at £10.10. 

If you would like to feel as if you are in the south of France, John Lewis has the plain glass Arles wicker-wrapped jug. It is reduced from £25 to £12, down 52 per cent.

Wanting something more elegant that you can also use for flowers? The Sandvig hammered-glass jug from made.com is also half-price at £22.

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VGP acquires French logistics development

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VGP NV and VALGO signed an agreement to purchase 32 hectares of land that housed the former Petroplus refining units in Petit-Couronne, near Rouen. This brownfield rehabilitation project is fully in line with VGP’s core expertise and strategy. Thanks to the six years ownership of the site by VALGO and its expertise in asbestos removal, soil and water table decontamination, in-situ waste treatment and development, this area has now become a suitable site for the development of new industries and business activities.

 

On the banks of the river Seine and close to the A13 highway, the 32-hectare area of land offers its future users a highly strategic location. Following the extensive depollution work carried out by VALGO, the site is now ready for redevelopment. VGP expanded into France only a few months ago and is delighted to start its French business activities in the dynamic Rouen Normandy metropolis area, via this major project. In total, around 150,000m² of land are set to be redeveloped to accommodate industrial and logistics projects, with work due to begin in 2023.

 

Jan Van Geet, CEO VGP, said: “VGP is delighted to begin its business activities in France on a site as exceptional as this one, with strong economic and environmental ambitions that are shared by both our partner, VALGO, and the local authorities. As the rehabilitation of brownfield sites is at the heart of our business, this project is a great opportunity for us to deploy our industrial and logistical know-how. The uncertain geopolitical situation and the rise in transport prices mean that companies are increasingly looking for local support to start their business. In this context, we strongly believe in the relevance of our integrated model with a long-term vision. We are now eager to get to work and bring all the expertise of the Group to the project.”

 

Francois Bouche, CEO VALGO, commented: “We are delighted that this huge piece of land has been sold to a major investor with experience in redeveloping brownfields in Europe. However, I would first like to celebrate the work of the men and women who worked so hard to make this colossal project a success. It took more than 1 million hours and over €60m in investment by VALGO to turn the page on over 80 years of refining on this site, which already employs 600 people.”

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