Tag Archives: Forum

Roehampton Partnership (21 November 2017) – comments from the gallery

This meeting of the Roehampton Partnership (RP) was rather underwhelming according to one attendee’s view. The following comments relate to that attendee’s view and obviously others that attended may have a different view of the following contents.

  1. Apologies for absence

There were many attendees that were absent, including the Chair and Vice Chair, and Councillor Mrs Steffi Sutters was the Chair for this evening. There were at least nine absences plus two roles which have not yet been filled.

Interesting, the representatives from University of Roehampton and University of Roehampton Student Union did not attend. This non-attendance was noticed and will be commented on later in this article though bear the following meeting dates in mind when considering this;

  • 21 September 2016 – University of Roehampton attended
  • 23 November 2016 – University of Roehampton Student Union attended
  • 15 March 2017 – University of Roehampton Student Union attended
  • 14 June 2017 – was cancelled.
  • 26 September 2017 – neither attended.
  • 21 November 2017 – neither attended.
  • 14 March 2018 – date of next meeting

In other words, if the University of Roehampton attends the meeting of 14 March 2018 that would be almost one and a half years between attending meetings, and one year for the University of Roehampton Student Union.

  1. Declarations of Interest

There was none.

  1. Minutes – 26th September 2017

Hersham Close Residents Association (HCRA) mentioned the following regarding;

  • Matters Arising – the follow up to be provided by Ibstock School was not given though the HCRA asked for this after the meeting.
  • Alton Area Regeneration – it was their suggestion to have Paper 17-268 included within the meeting which was taken up by the Chair.
  • Future Agenda Items – there was no mention of the request to include the retro-fitting of water sprinklers within tall buildings and that this was declined by the Chair.
  1. Alton Area Regeneration

There was quite a bit mentioned under this section.

The Redrow PR team, Communications Potential, apologised that Redrow could not attend due to some reason or other. Interestingly, Redrow did not appear at the Western Area Housing Panel (WAHP) of the 4 December 2017 either due to conflicting schedules. Given Redrow are about to begin work on a major regeneration in the area one might think more effort by Redrow to appear at such meetings may not too much to ask. The PR team provided some information regarding how many people attended the recent exhibitions and the feedback from them.

HCRA raised the issue that not all residents were aware that the Bessborough Road Consultation was held on 15 November 2017. It turns out that Councillors Peter Carpenter and Jeremy Ambache were not aware either of the event though Councillor Sur McKinney commented she was aware. HCRA asked whether this consultation would be presented at the RP and the silence appeared to indicate this was not going to happen.

HCRA also mentioned that various related regeneration items should be raised at the RP and were currently not, these being the Bessborough Road Consultation, Council Papers such as 17-268, and the Environmental Impact Assessment. A Council representative highlighted that we could comment on the planning application, which seemed to defeat the purpose of this advisory group and might be a bit late in terms of providing any feedback?

Councillor Ambache suggested that all regeneration documents should come to the RP first before going to the various Council Committees though this did not garner much support, even from Councillors Carpenter and McKinney. One might argue that this makes sense given the RP’s role?

  1. Public Health Regeneration

There was a short presentation though it seems as though there has not really been any substantial move forward on this topic or ‘social regeneration’.

The HCRA suggested that it might be worthwhile reaching out to Wandsworth Voluntary Sector Co-oridnation Project Manager who provides regular useful updates on grants and health initiatives. To which the presenter commented that she was to meet with this team the following week. The HCRA also suggested that it might be worthwhile having a Roehampton based such distribution, accepting that not all residents on the Alton estate have internet access, though this might be useful.

  1. Transport for London (TfL)

TfL did not attend.

  1. Future Agenda Items

None were mentioned.

  1. Future Meeting Dates

HCRA asked if there was a reason for five meetings dates next year when there are usually four. A person from the Council mentioned that one could always be removed. HCRA followed up with an ask about whether these dates linked in with events next year as this may have been the case for the extra date. The answer from the Council person was that there was likely an error in producing the dates.

The Roehampton Forum member asked if any of these meetings could be held at the University of Roehampton as then it might attend a meeting.

Please note that all information is provided on a best efforts basis and that readers should make their own efforts to review and assess the provided content.

Contact

Email us at – roeregeneration@yahoo.com – and let us know of any concerns/thoughts you may have or add a comment at the end of the blog entry in the ‘Leave a Reply’ section.

Or email your Roehampton and Putney Heath Councillors at;

Or email your local Member of Parliament at;

For a different view of Roehampton, especially the Alton Estate

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What became of the portacabin planning application?

For background on Roehampton University’s portacabin planning applications this can be found in previous articles within this blog under variance references such as ‘portacabins’, ‘2016/1385’ or ‘2016/5912’. Many people have asked about this planning application, for various reasons whether it be what happened or how did it not go to the Council’s Planning Application Committee (PAC), and this blog is to highlight some further background which might be of interest, not just for this application, though perhaps for others.

There were three retrospective planning applications, with the first two being withdrawn.

Application number: 2015/5648

Proposal: Erection of six portacabins for a temporary period of five years.

First Council document mentioned is on 14 October 2015 and the decision notice of 19 February states this application was withdrawn on 14 February 2016.

The portacabins in question are highlighted in the photo below taken from Kimpton House. Keep an eye on the portacabins in the red rectangle. Parkstead House (Grade I listed) is in the background.

Application number: 2016/1385

Proposal: Retention of seven portacabins sited against the southern boundary for a period of three years (affecting the setting of a Grade I listed building).

Decision: Withdrawn

Notice the retention change in the proposal from five years to three years, though the number of portacabins increased from six to seven?

This application was started on 15 March 2016, only a month after application 2015/5648, though was able to continue until December 2016. At this stage, this retrospective planning application had been in motion for a year with two withdrawn applications. There were a lot of objections which were lodged against this withdrawn planning application meaning that objectors had to start again with the next planning application.

Application number: 2016/5912

Proposal: Retention of three portacabins at the southern end of the site for use as additional teaching space for a further 3 years (Affecting the setting of a Grade I listed building).

Application Registered: 14 November 2016, though documents started to be uploaded on 11 October 2016

Decision: Approve with Conditions 14 February 2017

Again, there were a lot of objections, though have you noticed two further amendments.

The retention is now for three cabins instead of seven. Also, the date of approval is 28 months after the first document was uploaded (15 October 2015) with the first planning application (2015/5648).

The following photo, also taken from Kimpton House, highlights the now removed portacabins.

Didn’t Councillor Carpenter suggest he was going to provide resident representations at the Council’s Planning Application Committee (PAC)?

Yes, this was stated at the Roehampton Forum, yet didn’t happen. It has been suggested that Councillor Carpenter may not have been aware of the Council’s delegated power which permits planning application to be agreed by the Council’s planners rather than the PAC. This application was approved as it was less than 500 square metres of non-residential floor space. If this is true, one hopes that Councillor Carpenter is aware of the delegated powers now that he is on the PAC?

Another suggestion was that maybe Councillor Carpenter did not make his views known to the PAC that he wished to make representations at the PAC regarding this planning application. If this is true, then could Councillor Ambache, who was on the PAC at the time, could have informed Councillor Carpenter to make his representation position known to PAC members?

At the Let’s Talk event of 12th September 2016 wasn’t the portacabin planning discussed?

Yes, it was, and the following is taken from the Minutes;

“4. Roehampton University

Question/Comment – A resident said that he had contacted the planning service, without response, about the portacabins that had been erected without planning permission in the car park at Roehampton University facing Kimpton House. He said that the portacabins had been in place over 4 years and reduced on-site parking provision at the University that had been pushed out onto already busy roads such as Holybourne Avenue and Fontley Way. He suggested a survey by the University about staff and student parking during term and non-term time to determine the impact of the portacabins and said that residents were being forced into accepting a CPZ because of University demands. Concern also raised that the University is ‘getting away’ with not following due process and who is auditing the process? A resident raised the issue of excessive noise emanating from the University portacabins that affected Kimpton House and ‘terrified’ some residents.

Response – It was noted that an earlier planning application had been withdrawn but a revised one was due to be submitted including a transport assessment. A planning enforcement notice was still valid in respect of the unauthorised structures. Councillor Carpenter said that the University claimed that the portacabins did not reduce parking as the car park had been repainted to provide the same number of spaces as previously. He again advised residents to come along to the councillors surgeries to speak about any problems and if possible to attend the Roehampton Forum and Roehampton Partnership meetings. Councillor Ambache told the meeting that breaches of planning control should be reported to the planning service at the Town Hall and that, as a member of the Planning Applications Committee that would consider any application, he would not be able to ‘take a position’ on the matter but was listening to the related dialogue. He also confirmed that he was available to be contacted on any of the issues raised and this could be done in a variety of ways.

Councillor McKinney said that she understood the portacabin area to be the psychology department.

 With the consent of the meeting, Rev. McKinney then spoke as a governor of Whitelands College to inform the meeting that some concerns had been expressed at the Roehampton Forum. He said that he would raise the issue of the noise with the college and also that as far as he was aware the portacabins would be removed as the need for them had now reduced”.

Note that there is a comment in the Let’s Talk Minutes which states that the “portacabins would be removed as the need for them had now reduced”?

What does this application and Ibstock School’s planning application (2015/5074) have in common?

Both applications have taken at least two years to work their way through the planning system before being approved, though were being utilized by the applicants to some extent. As this is typed, Ibstock School’s planning application was registered on 22 September 2015 and is yet to be approved.

Three attempts for one planning application, maybe something to think about for 66 Alton Road?

With so many objections to the second application having to be repeated for the third application, is this a lesson as to the fate that 66 Alton Road (planning application 2017/3082) may face? Residents and interested parties may need to be vigilant in keeping an eye out for further attempts to demolish this building.

Please note that all information is provided on a best efforts basis and that readers should make their own efforts to review and assess the provided content.

 Contact

Email us at – roeregeneration@yahoo.com – and let us know of any concerns/thoughts you may have or add a comment at the end of the blog entry in the ‘Leave a Reply’ section.

Or email your Roehampton and Putney Heath Councillors at;

 Or email your local Member of Parliament at;

For a different view of Roehampton, especially the Alton Estate

 

Questions to Wandsworth Borough Council about water sprinklers

On 24 September 2017 many questions were put to Wandsworth Borough Council regarding retrofitting water sprinklers. These questions were;

“In Council Paper 17-269 it states –“Wandsworth  Council  has  99  blocks  of  ten  storeys  or  more  containing  6,401  residential  flats  and  maisonettes  –  4,043  tenanted,  1,315 resident  leaseholders  and  1,043  away  leaseholders”.

Please provide the following information per 99 blocks (and am happy to receive this an Excel attachment);

  1. The name of the block.
  2. The ward where the block is located.
  3. The number of tenants.
  4. The number of resident leaseholders.
  5. The number of away leaseholders.
  6. Per block, what is the estimated savings through buildings insurance through the introduction of water sprinklers, both to the Council and the individual leaseholders?
  7. Since 2007, on a per annum basis what are the number of fires and deaths which have occurred per block.
  8. The last date a Fire Risk Assessment was completed.

In Council Paper 17-266 it states the following: “Ms Kingham  was concerned  that  although  meetings would  be  held  with  relevant organisations including  the  London  Fire  Brigade  and  the  relevant  trade  association as stated  in  paragraph  15  of  the  report, little  consultation  had  taken  place  with  residents. The  Director of  Housing  and  Regeneration  advised  that  all  the  AHPs  had  received  a presentation  on  the  „Fire  Safety  in  Tower Blocks‟ at  the  last  cycle  of  AHP  meetings  as well  as this report being  presented,  prior to  consideration  by  HROSC, to  the  BRF.”

  1. Does the Council believe that the response from the Director of Housing and Regeneration answers Ms Kingham’s query that there has been “little consultation” with residents?
  2. If the Council believes that this is the case, please explain how this consultation has been fulfilled.

At the Housing and Regeneration Overview and Scrutiny Committee of Thursday 14th September Mrs M Price from the Eastern Area Housing Panel spoke.

  1. Is this normal practice at these meetings to have a Borough Residents Forum (BRF) member speak at these meetings?
  2. Where any other members of the BRF invited to discuss water sprinklers?
  3. If yes, which BRF members?

When the Section 20 consultations begin,

  1. If residents in a block are against the installation of water sprinklers will the water sprinklers still be installed?
  2. If yes, please explain the reason(s)?

Hammersmith & Fulham Council are not charging leaseholders for the installation of water sprinklers –https://www.lbhf.gov.uk/sites/default/files/section_attachments/hf-fire-safety-plus-web.pdf

  1. Did WBC consider the option of leaseholders not paying for water sprinkler installation?
  2. If it did, then what was the reason for not charging leaseholders?
  3. If WBC did not consider charging leaseholders then what is the reason for this?

Wandsworth Legal has opined that leaseholders are liable for the costs of water sprinklers being installed within blocks,

  1. Please provide the documents which was provided to Legal which requested the advice.
  2. Please provide a copy of Legal’s confirmation that leaseholders are liable along with the supporting explanation.

Ongoing maintenance.

  1. On a per annum basis, what does WBC estimate will be the ongoing maintenance cost (subject to caveats that WBC may wish to include)?
  2. On a per annum basis, what does WBC estimate will be the ongoing maintenance per annum maintenance costs to leaseholders (subject to caveats that WBC may wish to include)?

Fire Risk Assessments (FRAs) are commented on as “FRAs were completed for all our blocks in 2016 by an independent expert and are reviewed annually”.   [Accessed 24 September 2017]. Having seen four FRAs for the Alton Estate after recent requests by residents they were all conducted in May 2016;

  1. Should another FRA have been conducted by May 2017?”

The answers should have been answered by now. If interested in the answers it might be worth asking the Freedom of Information team at foi@wandsworth.gov.uk with the reference 2017/15626.

 Please note that all information is provided on a best efforts basis and that readers should make their own efforts to review and assess the provided content.

 Contact

Email us at – roeregeneration@yahoo.com – and let us know of any concerns/thoughts you may have or add a comment at the end of the blog entry in the ‘Leave a Reply’ section.

For a different view of Roehampton, especially the Alton Estate

Or email your Roehampton and Putney Heath Councillors at;

Water sprinklers – what does Hammersmith & Fulham Council think?

In Wandsworth Borough Council’s Paper 17-269 regarding retro-fitting water sprinklers it states in section 17 that “As these costs (approximately £3,000 to £4,000) will be imposed upon leaseholders with relatively short notice, it is recommended that, with respect to the cost of the sprinkler systems only, existing repayment arrangements for resident leaseholders be extended from ten months to 48 months. An extension beyond 48 months may draw criticism from other leaseholders facing relatively substantial bills for major works, for example in 2015/16 1,231 leaseholders were billed for major works charges in excess of £3,000”.

Well, in the Hammersmith and Fulham Council, they seem to be thinking a bit differently. The following comes from the Hammersmith Leasehold forum and are the Minutes of the meeting held on 18th September 2017;

“4. Fire Safety

Chris Culleton – Compliance Manager: The council has a new fire safety policy. A decision has been made to carry out a new ‘Fire Safety Plus’ investment programme.

LBHF are allocating 20 million pounds to make sure homes are safe. Importantly we are looking at enhanced standards that exceed current building regulations standards e.g. new flat entrance doors that offer 60 minute protection.

It’s part of our commitment to keep everybody safe.

 The programme includes:

  • Independent experts reviewing fire safety in communal blocks. We have asked them to focus on tall blocks at first, but we are also looking at five storeys and below.
  • We’ve replaced the concierge staff at Edward Woods Estate and Charecroft Estate.
  • We’re working on a plan to install sprinklers in all high rise blocks. As a first step, advised by our independent consultants and the London Fire Brigade, we are drawing up specifications for the work for each block where sprinklers would help improve safety. We’ll be in touch with you about the detailed plans for your estate or block. We will not be charging leaseholders for installing sprinklers.

Free fire safety checks are available are available to every resident on request. We will check your fire doors, give you a free heat detector, and if you want us to, conduct electrical tests on your white goods. If any of your white goods fail a safety test we will replace them with a brand new one free of charge. If the external fire door to your flat or the door on your kitchen doesn’t comply we’ll replace them free of charge with new ones that resist fire for 60 minutes. The London Fire Brigade have also advised  residents not to use cube style plug adaptors and have told us linear adapters with circuit breakers are safer. So we will also exchange your cube style plug adaptors for free for a safer type of extension lead”.

It’s a bit of a different approach isn’t it?

Contact

Email us at – roeregeneration@yahoo.com – and let us know of any concerns/thoughts you may have or add a comment at the end of the blog entry in the ‘Leave a Reply’ section.

Or email us to join the (almost) weekly newsletter which tries to highlight what’s been happening in Roehampton.

For a different view of Roehampton, especially the Alton Estate

Or email your Roehampton and Putney Heath Councillors at;

Roehampton University seeking planning permission for cabins near Parkstead House (part 6)

What happened?

On Tuesday 24th May at the Roehampton Forum (RF) it was voted on and supported that the RF would object to planning application 2016/1385.

Some key moments are as follows;

Kimpton House residents attended and gave their views

Two residents from Kimpton House attended the meeting and provided their views about objecting to the cabins. One of the reasons being because of the noise that was coming from the cabins which had been reported to the University. A recording of this noise had been shared with the University and it seemed that only now, that day, that something had been done by the University to mitigate this noise.

These residents also highlighted that they had created a petition which had been signed by many residents in the Kimpton House building.

The question is, should it get to this stage before the University acts on residents concerns?

Two objections were circulated

These objections are on the the Council’s planning website and one was from The Putney Society and the other from a Kimpton House resident which included a reference to the noise that came from the cabins. Read them below though to see the full objections please refer to the Council website;

The Putney Society

“Roehampton University makes great play in its advertising of the fine historic landscape  setting of its major buildings.  Clearly this message didn’t get through to whoever thought  that a group of Portacabins would be a suitable setting for the Grade I* listed Parkstead  House. That these already exist without consent should not colour a proper assessment of  this application.  The question should be ‘if they did not exist, would you give consent?’ The  only possible answer to that is NO, not even on a supposedly temporary consent.

The gestation period for the other recent developments by the university at Downshire  House and on the Main Campus shows that it takes more than three years from the first  consultation to completion.  Unless there is already an approved plan for permanent teaching space for the Psychology department then there will be another ‘temporary’  application three years hence.

The fact that this is an application for ‘retention’ of buildings erected without consent by a university supposedly well versed in dealing with planning applications and listed buildings should be all the more reason to treat it with proper consideration of both long and short  term impact.  If they are seen to ‘get away with it’, what chance of enforcement against anyone else?

Our local members report that far from there being surplus parking, the spaces in front of Parkstead House are often full, and that there is a problem with students parking in the  surrounding residential streets.  All this before the additional rooms at Downshire House come on stream.

 * Grade I is of course reserved only for around 3% of the very best of our history”.

Kimpton House resident

“I’m a resident of Kimpton house and am agent the proposal for three reasons 1) the cabins were put there without prior approval. 2) the noise!!! I occasionally work nights and sleep interested day I’ve been woken several times by loud cheering and screams coming from them. I live on the 4 floor so adding to the hight will bring the noise closer. 3) Parking is atrocious on the estate and a large factor is staff and students parking here because there isn’t enough parking in the college the cabins are already on top of parking spaces they should not be extended they should be taken down”.

Majority vote

There was an overwhelming vote in favour of objecting. Two noticeable votes against were by Councillor Carpenter and Reverend McKinney.

The question is, of those whom voted against the motion, whom do they represent, the University or the residents?

Resident car parking

On the topic of car parking, that is, students parking their cars on the Alton Estate as the result of the University not permitting car parking on its premises, the University mentioned that maybe it was time for residents only car parking which could encourage students to not bring their cars.

The questions are; why should this be the resident’s problem to solve? The University knowingly has a premises which has two entrances that are landlocked by the Alton Estate, should it be its problem to solve rather than making a resident problem? This is well summed up in another objection, also by a Kimpton House resident and the extract is below;

“Residents will rightly feel aggrieved if the Committee were to accept the absurd notion that parking on the roads closest to the University does not pose any difficulty. That is not the case as the relative ease in finding a parking space out of term time is quite apparent. Those residents who expressed a view in about 2008 on whether they wanted a controlled parking zone (permit scheme)in the area to give them priority in on-street parking decisively rejected such a move – and my vote was also to reject a CPZ. This was probably because they thought it unreasonable that they should be forced down that route of having to pay to park as a result of student parking. The University should accept that their short-sighted approach will not endear them to residents should they feel that such a solution is the only way to make parking easier!”

How many objections are there now?

There are now 13 responses of which there are 12 objections, and 11 objections are from Alton Estate residents.

We are aware that there are at least two more objections which have not yet been uploaded, one being the petition from Kimpton House.

Contact

Email us at – roeregeneration@yahoo.com – and let us know of any concerns/thoughts you may have or add a comment at the end of the blog entry in the ‘Leave a Reply’ section.

Or email us to join the (almost) weekly newsletter which tries to highlight what’s been happening in Roehampton.

Or email your Roehampton and Putney Heath Councillors at;

Peter Carpenter – pcarpenter@wandsworth.gov.uk

Jeremy Ambache – JAmbache@wandsworth.gov.uk

Sue McKinney – SMcKinney@wandsworth.gov.uk

Or email the Wandsworth Council team managing the ‘regeneration’

Team Roehampton – Roehampton@wandsworth.gov.uk

Allbrook House – ‘object of beauty’ or ‘act of sabotage’ the Council discusses

Intro

To read the answer read Item 7 of the following link –

 Questions to the Leader of the Council

Some thoughts which need to be highlighted with regards to this question and answer are as follows. It would be good to have some feedback from residents regarding this

1.Mention of the Library building?

Councillor Sweet seems to have forgotten to mention the Alton Estate Library building, which was also part of the listing.

2.Putney Society, previously opposed a listing? Think again….

Unfortunately, what Councillor Ravi Govinidia seems to be unaware of is that the Putney Society supported the listing of Allbrook House and the Library building. Not only did the Putney Society support the listing but so too did the Roehampton Forum Management Committee and the Alton Regeneration Watch.

The Putney Society has been in favour of listing the building for some time, perhaps the Councillors need to do some homework and have a read of past comments.

“a) Allbrook House, the library and the open space should be included in the Conservation Area. They are also candidates for local listing” (Source: Wandsworth Borough Council Paper 10-876 Appendix 2)

“If the five slab blocks adjoining Clarence Lane are worthy of being listed Grade II*, then the similarly detailed Allbrook House should be considered for listing by English Heritage. It is equally distinguished” (Source: Putney Society response regarding regeneration 19 September 2012)

“The Society played its part in the review, three years ago, of the Alton Estate conservation area. One conclusion of that review was that the boundary of the conservation area should be extended to take in Roehampton Library and Allbrook House above it, together with the green space and established trees between these buildings and Roehampton Lane. We believe that this view is shared by many in Roehampton. These buildings are, we consider, worthy of being added to the council’s local list of buildings of architectural and historic interest: they are a distinctive composition enhancing the entrance to the Alton Estate at this point. If the five slab blocks adjoining Clarence Lane are worthy of being listed Grade II*, then the similarly detailed Allbrook House should be considered for listing by English Heritage. It is equally distinguished”. (Source: Putney Society response regarding regeneration 19 September 2012)

3. ‘Object of beauty’ where did that come from?

The Councillors seem to be unaware of what the criteria is for listing. The criteria is;

  1. Special value within certain types, either for architectural or planning reasons or as illustrating social and economic history (for instance, industrial buildings, railway stations, schools, hospitals, prisons, theatres).
  2. Technological innovation or virtuosity (for instance cast iron, prefabrication, or the early use of concrete).
  3. Group value, especially as examples of town planning (for instance, squares, terraces or model estates).
  4. Association with well-known characters or events

(Source: Wandsworth Borough Council website , Accessed 18th August 2015]

Where does the ‘object of beauty’ fit in?

4.“Councillor Ellis and I have made representations to the Secretary of State that Allbrook House does not meet Historic England’s listing criteria”

Unbelievable, Councillor Ellis is the Chair, yes, the Chair, of the Roehampton Partnership and a member of the Council Executive and yet he never mentioned this in the Roehampton Partnership meetings. The most recent meeting was 23rd September 2015 and comments for listing deadline was 31st August 2015. Seriously, this was not worth a mention? Or even sharing with the other members of the Roehampton Partnership whom responsibility it is to have “openness” and “leadership”. Given the impact on the regeneration, this is must be discussed, yet hasn’t, as the regeneration is plastered all over point 1 of the constitution “aims and objectives”. (Source: Terms of Reference).

What a joke………………………………………

Added to this, why has the Alton Regeneration Watch’s representations not yet been added to the Minutes of the Community Services Overview and Scrutiny Committee meeting Tuesday, 22nd September, 2015, Item 4 when all other items appear to have been added to the website? The listing was mentioned then, yet the first mention in a Council document is within this question 7?

5.“The ward councillors also support the need to implement the programme in this way”.

Hmmm……the Putney Labour Party has expressed support for these buildings in the past so one has to ask how such a u-turn take place?

“The whole council plan rests on the demolition of Allbrook House, the “landmark” block above Roehampton Library. This is the one question where there was no majority opposition to the council plan, but a clear plurality – 45% – don’t want the block demolished. Barely a third – 34% – supported demolition and a sizeable number – 21% – didn’t feel able to give a view. We had 21 surveys back from the parts of Danebury Avenue, including Allbrook House, under threat of demolition. Of these, 4 supported demolition and 14 opposed it.

 It’s a great shame that the Council never even considered improving Allbrook House, which contains some large properties within it with spectacular views of Roehampton. Recladding or even more radical remodelling of Allbrook House could transform this block – the gateway to the Alton estate”. (Source: Putney Labour Party “What Roehampton Wants” 2008)

Note the word “landmark”…….

Then more recently, in 2010;

“Comment from Councillor Carpenter:

  1. Recommends redrawing the boundary of the CA to include Harbidge Ave, Allbrook House, Roehampton Library and the green in Alton West; and the Cornerstone and low odd numbered buildings on Alton Road in Alton East for their architectural interest. ” (Source: Wandsworth Borough Council Paper 10-876 Appendix 2)

The ward’s Councillors are hardly supporting the local community’s wishes for as mentioned local community groups have supported this listing.

6.Past comments made by the Council.

Councillor Govindia stated in his answer that “it is clear that the building can hardly be described as an object of beauty or, in listing parlance, an object of national historic or architectural significance”. Much like the ward’s Councillors past comments do not share this view.

In 2006 –

”Allbrook House and Roehampton Library form a notable element of the Alton Estate at the main entrance to the estate, close to Danebury Avenue’s junction with Roehampton Lane. Although arguably of architectural interest, neither building is listed nor in the Alton Conservation Area. There is no statutory protection therefore, but there is a general UDP objective to retain and rehabilitate buildings which contribute to the character of the Borough, and English Heritage and others may be lobbied to support their retention, and may do so”. (Source: Wandsworth Borough Council Paper 06-773)

In 2010 –

 “is a bespoke design with an unusual roof shape and innovative natural lighting (designed by LCC architect John Partridge, who later became significant in private practice)”. (Source: Wandsworth Borough Council Paper 10-876)

The following comments are from the Alton Conservation Area Appraisal & Management Strategy which had much to say about the positive contribution to the estate these buildings provided both from their relationship to the estate and as buildings in their own right[ii];

“The shopping parade in Danebury Avenue, completed in 1959-60 and the library, in 1961, are outside the conservation area. The library has architectural interest, distinguished in part by its curved walls and undulating roof form but also by the associated (though detached) Allbrook House which seems to float above – it too has an interesting form and details, including decorative block detailing to its balconies which unifies and softens the harshness of the structure. The library was one of the last buildings in the original development of Alton West. It was designed by John Partridge of the London County Council (LCC) Architect’s Department incorporating ideas from Wandsworth Council’s library service. It was opened in September 1961 by the children’s author Noel Streatfield. There was originally a mural by Bill Mitchell in resin and plastics”.

“Some buildings outside the conservation area have an influence on the area’s character, particularly noticeable along Harbridge Avenue, just off Danebury Road, where there are shops, the library and Allbrook House (all of which fall outside the conservation area)”

“Generally, those buildings that fall outside the conservation area do not have the same architectural rigour or quality of those that are within. There are however, buildings in the vicinity of this character area – Allbrook House and Roehampton Library – that are of interest in terms of their architectural presence and relationship to the Alton Estate. The presence and connection of these buildings to the north-eastern edge of the estate makes them difficult to go unnoticed – though outside the conservation area, their impact is complementary due to their applied architectural treatment and form, directly linked to the modernist principles established for Alton West, namely monumentality and originality”

“As part of the appraisal process, the boundaries of the Alton Estate Conservation Area were reviewed and considered to be acceptable. However, during the public consultation people strongly urged the Council to extend the conservation area to include areas including Allbrook House and its green space, Roehampton Library and buildings along Danebury Avenue. At its Strategic Planning and Transportation Overview and Scrutiny Committee meeting on 18 November 2010, the Council undertook to consider further research on this matter”.

“Examples of other impressive but unlisted individual buildings are: Ibstock Place School, Maryfield Convent, Cedars Cottages and Hartfield House. Generally, those areas that fall outside the conservation area simply do not have the same consideration, in terms of architectural or historic interest and care of detailing and landscaping that are strong and consistent with those that fall within the conservation area. There are however some buildings that do have architectural interest outside the conservation area such as Allbrook House and Roehampton Library”.

Councillor Govindia, would you like to reconsider your view (and this time include a mention of the Library Building)?

7.Comments from the Twentieth Century Society

Roeregeneration will leave you with the following comments from Twentieth Century Society which highlight that there are bodies that are non-local which support protecting these buildings, and this is one example;

“Allbrook House and Danebury (Roehampton) Library and their immediate setting, ie the car park, open land adjacent to the two buildings and 1-115 Danebury Avenue, should be added to the conservation area.

These serve as a strong link between Alton East and Alton West. Allbrook House was built as a later phase of Alton West, but is very closely reminiscent of the vocabulary used in the Grade II* listed blocks on Highcliffe Drive.

The library and retail units in Danebury Ave demonstrated an aspect of the LCC’s approach that is not ‘documented’ elsewhere on the estate. The library is of interest in its own right having a distinguishing roof form and was designed by John Partridge, Roy Stout and Tom Kay who became significant architects in private practice.

The Twentieth Century Society has objected to two successive applications for redevelopment of these buildings in 2009 as it believes the loss of this part of the Alton Estate would be deeply regrettable”. (Source: Wandsworth Borough Council Paper 10-876 Appendix 2)

 Related documents/articles

Contact

Email us at – roeregeneration@yahoo.com – and let us know of any concerns/thoughts you may have or add a comment at the end of the blog entry in the ‘Leave a Reply’ section.

Or email your Roehampton and Putney Heath Councillors at;

Peter Carpenter – pcarpenter@wandsworth.gov.uk

Jeremy Ambache – JAmbache@wandsworth.gov.uk

Sue McKinney – SMcKinney@wandsworth.gov.uk

Or email the Wandsworth Council team managing the ‘regeneration’

Team Roehampton – Roehampton@wandsworth.gov.uk

 

 

 

 

Roehampton Voice Issue 21

Well, the regeneration is definitely a hot topic at the moment, and the latest edition of the Roehampton Voice has a few entries about it. Let’s take a a quick run through…

A Cautionary Tale – page 4

A interesting example of what could happen in terms of the feared “rat run” that could be caused by opening the Danebury Avenue, or maybe even Highcliffe Drive, barriers.

Roehampton Social Audit- 5 Years On – page 6

This article refers to the Social Audit which was done back in 2010 and focuses heavily on the dwindling of community services that will continue as part of the regeneration. Let’s be clear about this, it is a concern especially as it has taken so long for this topic to rear its head? What have our community leaders been doing about protecting this?

At the Roehampton Partnership, this has been mentioned though not much more than that even as far back as the December 3rd meeting. Have a read of the Minutes to see the concern expressed by Hollis Blake.

The report is worth a read for others aspects which are relevant.

Links of interest (click the sentence below for the article)

> Roehampton Partnership minutes 3rd December 2014

> Roehampton Social Audit 2010

Interestingly, this Audit was commissioned by the Holy Trinity Church and the Roehampton Forum, both of whom have roles on the Roehampton Partnership……..

Regeneration News and Views – page 7

There are four articles on this page.

  1. ARW commenting on its meeting of 29th May
  2. A message from one of the Voice’s editing team on the regeneration
  3. An oral historian gawking for thoughts from locals
  4. A high level timeline of the regeneration

More Regeneration News – page 8

Reverend McKinney provides his 10 reasons for why the regeneration is required. This is taken from his letter published in the Wandsworth Guardian letter section dated 23 April 2015.

What is interesting is that some of these comments contradict the findings of the Social Audit which was referred to earlier, for instance, point 9, states “Environmental improvements will ensure that the Bull Green will become a real recreational facility, rather than a deserted field with a few tracks across it”. The report of 2010, page 20,  says leave it alone with 74.8% agreeing to “Green Surroundings- including : open spaces; Trees; landscaping of estate” and the Labour Party report, question 7, which states “Q7. How concerned are you about retaining the green space and trees?” has a 65.1% result which is “Entirely concerned”.

Do not forget that the Reverend was the Chair of the Forum (a commissioner of the Social Audit report) at this time. Makes you think, “why bother responding when it doesn’t appear to count”.

Also, point 1 states “lt is not social cleansing because all freeholders, council tenants and resident I leaseholders, affected will be guaranteed new properties and no financial loss”. Well, at the Alton Regeneration Watch meeting of 2nd June, a couple of leaseholders (one directly impacted by the regeneration) called attention to this comment. Perhaps, the Reverend would like to provide some background as to how this will work, along with expected service charges and Council Taxes?

Information of interest

> Roehampton Social Audit 2010

> Labour survey results 2008 “What Roehampton Wants” : this is where the Question 7 comes from

Contact

Email us at – roeregeneration@yahoo.com – and let us know of any concerns/thoughts you may have or add a comment at the end of the blog entry in the ‘Leave a Reply’ section.

Or email your Roehampton and Putney Heath Councillors at;

Peter Carpenter – pcarpenter@wandsworth.gov.uk

Jeremy Ambache – JAmbache@wandsworth.gov.uk

Sue McKinney – SMcKinney@wandsworth.gov.uk

Or email the Wandsworth Council team managing the ‘regeneration’

Team Roehampton – Roehampton@wandsworth.gov.uk