By Dylan J. Stone
Approximately 1 in 3 locals live in South Broken Hill.
It is important to wonder whether Patton Street is seeing the same resurgence that Argent Street is seeing in the post-lockdown era.
It is true to say that many new businesses and social enterprises are opening on Argent Street and the demand for these new businesses is literally walking the footpaths at all times of the day. Nevertheless, is Patton Street enjoying this same level of resurgence?
Larry Angell, the Chairperson of the Patton Village Broken Hill Committee, comments “the biggest issue Patton Street has is the lack of a supermarket. However, the future for Patton Street lies with its village atmosphere.”
Due to the lack of a supermarket, many smaller retail businesses trade in Patton Street such as food shops, a post office, clothing shops and other specialty shops.
The lack of a shopping centre, according to Larry, is countered by the dominance of these smaller businesses and it’s the collection of these small, unique businesses that provide Patton Street with the village atmosphere that is quickly dissipating elsewhere.
The completion of Stage 1 of Patton Park has only added value to the village atmosphere, according to Larry, as Patton Street can continue to offer a recreational space for upcoming events.
Perhaps the best indication of the importance of Patton Park is the Village Committee’s plan to hold a Family Fun and Market Day on August 21st, from 11am to 3pm.
Larry confirms the day will showcase some local arts and crafts to Big Bash travellers and (there are) plans for live music, jumping castles and a sausage sizzle.
Other events to be held in Patton Park during the year include the Christmas in the Park event, which is currently slated for November 26th, 2022.
The activation of Patton Park ensures that locals and tourists alike can attend these types of events and at the same time they can enjoy the many retail and specialty shops located on Patton Street.
Larry confirms that one of the most significant priorities of South Broken Hill is to see further development of Patton Park, to ensure the park can be best utilised for upcoming and future events.
The dominant view of the Village Committee is that redevelopment of the street and the park must contribute to, but not conflict with, the village atmosphere of Patton Street.
The village atmosphere in other places throughout Australia is being traded away for convenience and so the Village Committee aims to ensure that this atmosphere is protected in Patton Street. Patton Street will certainly see a resurgence similar to what is occurring in Argent
Street in the post-lockdown era but the Village Committee will ensure this resurgence occurs in a way that will strengthen the village atmosphere the community has come to love and appreciate in Patton Street.