Have you followed the progress of the student housing in the Alton regeneration?
Don’t worry if you haven’t as we will give you a step by step account of how this has progressed throughout the phases. We will ask you to consider two things;
- Has the Council listened to resident’s views?
- Are our Labour Councillors defending our views?
Before we begin we list the times the Council and Councillors have mentioned the importance of listening to residents during this consultation.
Phase 1 – Options Consultation
The options consultation provided various suggestions for moving student housing from Mount Clare to the Town Centre. The questionnaire, though, provided an option for feedback as to whether this student housing could be in either Portswood Place or Danebury Avenue Town Centre.
Phase 2 – February Consultation feedback
This document was not publicised as being published on the internet and we were not aware of its existence until Jonny Moore, the Regeneration Project Manager, shared that knowledge with us at the Saturday March 1st Preferred Option Open Day. We made this point to Councillor Carpenter at one of his surgeries that this was a poor piece of communication as residents were not aware of this document, and made this point again at the May 8th Hustings to both Councillor Carpenter and Councillor Sutters.
When the feedback is read, maybe there was an underlying reason for not publicising this document.
Phase 3 – Preferred Options Masterplan
With no explanation, Portswood Place has dropped off as an option (even though it was mentioned within the Phase 1 questionnaire as an option). Also, given the lack of residents support, somehow the scope of student housing increased within Danebury Avenue Town Centre (from one building to two). Also, within the presentation board (which was not delivered to residents) it highlighted a roof terrace.
Please note that we approached our Labour Councillors regarding this and they were reluctant to respond on this query.
Phase 4 – July Consultation feedback
Despite being published online on the 21st July (when the Team Roehampton’s entry in the June Roehampton Voice had an entry stating a June release), and again, it did not showing overwhelming support for having student housing in the Town Centre.
Phase 5 – September submission to the Housing and Regeneration Overview and Scrutiny Committee
The persistence of having student housing in the town centre is finally revealed in Council Paper No. 14-447, conveniently when just about to be presented to the Council. There are, we believe, a few challenges that can be made to the information that was provided and agreed by the Council. We did email the Councillors on the Committee before the meeting was held though we did not receive a reply.
We would like to draw your attention to point Appendix 1 (point 23) in particular.
So please, make your voices heard, email your Councillors and copy us in. Together we can make a difference.
Email your Roehampton and Putney Heath Councillors at;
Peter Carpenter – firstname.lastname@example.org
Jeremy Ambache – JAmbache@wandsworth.gov.uk
Sue McKinney – SMcKinney@wandsworth.gov.uk
And the Wandsworth Council team managing the ‘regeneration’
Team Roehampton – Roehampton@wandsworth.gov.uk
Our email address – email@example.com – if you would like share your thoughts.