COMMENT: Say goodbye to Thornbury's small town charm
WE may have known this all along, but now a national audience has been informed that Thornbury is one of the best places to live in the country.
It was voted fourth top town in the nation by the Sunday Times last week.
But the initial thrill of the accolade will leave in its wake a multitude of difficult questions regarding Thornbury’s long-term future.
The town is on the verge of tremendous change and will grow exponentially over the next decade.
Will building 500 homes at Park Farm and potentially another 250 at Morton Way increase its appeal and attractiveness or significantly damage it? It is hard to say at this point.
Thornbury is a great place to live and to raise children so it is very likely that many young families will jump at the opportunity to call Thornbury their home when or if the new developments are completed.
But of course it could very easily go the other way and herald the beginning of the end for the town. This may seem like a very cynical view; unless it is just a realistic one.
After all, the reason Thornbury even made it to the Sunday Times' top 101 in the first place is its market town charm. It is described by the broadsheet as "an attractive small town with a historic centre".
Granted the historic centre, castle and picturesque cottages are not going anywhere but when construction begins we will be forced to bid farewell to Thornbury’s "small town" charm.
That can't be a good thing, whichever way you look at it, and planners need to tread carefully when considering the future of our special town.