You probably didn’t give Bracknell a second thought until someone went and (finally) built a shiny new shopping centre right in the middle of it.
I don’t necessarily blame you.
For me, born and bred there, it has always had a charm of its own, a bit of a forced together community, but one I grew up in and have nothing but fond memories of.
When I think about growing up there, the only reason Bracknell ever really made it in to the conversation was due to the incredible Coral Reef Waterworld , but given the regularity with which we all went there, we could never understand outsiders’ excitement.
News of Coral Reef’s awesomeness has even reached as far as Cambridge, though Cambridgeshire Live’s assertion it was just a ‘short trip’ is a bit of a stretch!
Despite my attempts to play down what a great place Bracknell is, I’m extremely proud to call it my hometown and don’t like outsiders making totally unfounded judgements about it.
And I’m not alone, there are some things you should never mention if talking to someone from Bracknell.
To help you avoid those death stares, tuts and head shakes – here are some pointers:
Bracknell’s a ****hole
The obvious place to start.
Anyone from Bracknell will more than likely have had this opinion voiced at them.
The town centre was always the subject of ire, and it’s true the it had certainly had its time but with the shiny new Lexicon and further developments on the way , the argument has more holes than a sieve.
Add to that Bracknell has always been a very green town full of trees and large open green spaces.
That sentence will of course be jumped on by anyone who has seen the amount of house building going on, but there are still plenty of open spaces in and around the town.
There are two versions of this conversation depending on who you are speaking to.
Version 1: Bracknell, where’s that?
Answer: About an hour west of London. Near Windsor. You know, where the Queen lives.
Version 2: (when Reading were in the Premier League) Bracknell, where’s that?
Answer: Near Reading. Ohhhh Reading FC! Person walks away still with no idea where Bracknell is.
There’s nothing to do
I’m just going to bullet point a list.
- Ice skating
- Nightclub (Apres counts okay)
- MANY more public swimming pools than Reading
- AND Coral Reef
- Two cinemas (again, more than Reading. Not that it’s a competition)
- Sunday League football
- Country parks (one with an adventure climbing centre)
Not to mention a beer festival, arts venue and theatre, rugby club, football club and plenty more amenities within easy reach.
There are far too many roundabouts
No there aren’t. They are fundamental to keeping our town moving.
You can bet that if you see someone using a roundabout correctly anywhere in the world, they grew up in Bracknell.
It’s just one of those places you cut through to get from the M3 to M4 (and vice versa)
If that’s what you think then you are missing out on the home of Tracey Beaker (aka Dani Harmer) and less importantly Harry Potter , the place that James Corden and Mathew Baynton were desperate to get home to in The Wrong Mans, of Kevin Keegan falling over (we were all there) and the shopping precinct where that kid threw a stone at a street lamp in the film Fighting With My Family.
The Rock was in that film so how can it be all that bad.
It’s just ugly 1960s offices
That probably was true up to a point.
Now most of those eyesore offices have either been converted to flats – because who wouldn’t want to live above the railway station – or demolished to make way for a housing development.
Obviously a Laser Quest or Roller Disco would have been preferred but you can’t accuse us of being all ugly 1960s offices.
It was only a bandstand
Just don’t. A little part of all of us died when that came down.
Yes, since we all got mobile phones it became a bit redundant as a meeting place but that doesn’t mean we didn’t still mourn its passing.
See also: The clock fountain, RIP.
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