Crystal Palace Community Association
NEWSLETTER Summer 2011
Registered Charity No. 261790
Free to members - ÂŁ2 where sold
CPCA CHALLENGES SECRETARY OF STATE The CPCA has made application to challenge in the High Court the decision of the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government to approve the LDA Masterplan application for Crystal Palace Park The LDA Crystal Palace Park Masterplan includes sale of protected public parkland for construction of blocks of luxury apartments, which the CPCA continues to strongly oppose.
LDA MASTERPLAN APPROVAL THE CHALLENGE On 14 December 2010, the Secretary of State Eric Pickles MP gave his Formal Decision to grant planning permission to the LDA Masterplan application for Crystal Palace Park. Following the Local Public Inquiry into the LDA Masterplan application held in Crystal Palace between 7 July and 9 September 2009, the Inspector Alan Novitzky recommended that planning permission, conservation area consent and listed building consent all be granted, subject to conditions. In a letter of 21 July 2010, the Secretary of State (S of S) indicated that he was, in principle, minded to agree with the Inspector and to grant planning permission, subject to the revised conditions set out in Annex A to that letter, and to the submission of a revised section 106 agreement which addressed the concerns set out in paragraph 30 of the letter. Eric Pickles then deferred his decision on the application and associated applications for conservation area consent and listed building consent to enable parties to comment on the proposed revisions to the conditions and for revised section 106 agreements to be submitted for his consideration. The S of S noted that the planning application is described as a hybrid application but designated it an outline application with all matters, except means of access, reserved except that the proposed changes associated with the Grade II* listed National Sports Centre are fully detailed.
The S of S further stated that he considered Conditions 58-60 and the related Annex A1, which required the payment of money, would be unlawful and he proposed deleting Conditions 58-60 and the related Annex A1 as he considered that any arrangements for the payment of any monies for the improvement works, as originally set out in Conditions 58-60 and Annex A1, should be the subject of a planning obligation, and he invited the LDA to submit a reformulated section 106 agreement incorporating those provisions contained in Conditions 58-60 and Annex A1 of the Inspectorâ€™s Report.
Section 106 Agreements Section 106 agreements are legal agreements between a planning authority and a developer, giving the local authority the right to require that specified things are done. For example, if a developer were to build 100 new houses, there would be effects on local schools, roads etc, which the local authority would have to deal with. In that situation there might be a Section 106 agreement as part of the granting of planning permission. The developer might agree to make a contribution towards provision of new schools or other infrastructure requirements.
Eric Pickles agreed with the Inspectorâ€™s recommendation to grant planning permission for the proposed development subject to the revised conditions, as set out in
his letter of 21 July 2010 and the submission of a revised section 106 agreement which addresses concerns set out in this letter. Robert McCracken QC and Annabel Graham Paul have advised the CPCA that there are powerful legal grounds to challenge the decision of the Secretary of State in the High Court. Robert McCracken QC has kindly agreed to continue to act on a pro bono basis. Annabel Graham Paul has kindly agreed to act on the basis of much reduced fees. The CPCA is currently preparing evidence and other material to tight deadlines and is urgently considering the matter of costs in so proceeding and the possibility of costs awarded against the applicants if the challenge were to fail. It is probable that two persons, CPCA Chair John Payne and member Tony Elliott, will be the named applicants, and it is intended to ensure that they are protected or otherwise indemnified against possible adverse cost awards. Whilst the CPCA has some limited funds, donations are needed from members and others and a minimum of 10 persons are each asked to enter written surety to provide ÂŁ500 towards any adverse costs award. The purpose would be to indemnify the applicants against an adverse costs award. It is hoped that there would be no need to draw upon it, and that the exceptionally modest legal fees for CPCA representation would be recovered from the Secretary of State. Mike Warwick
COST ORDER UPDATE Currently, CPCA solicitors, Richard Buxton, are discussing terms for a Protective Cost Order with the Treasury Solicitor, acting on behalf of the Secretary of State. Our evidence was submitted in February, however, the LDA have yet to serve their evidence. Technically the LDA are now out of time although they can still submit evidence but will have to explain to the Court the reasons for their delay.
LDA PARK MASTERPLAN IN DOUBT Over the last ten years, many millions have been spent by the London Development Agency on the Latz + Partner Crystal Palace Park Masterplan, but this controversial £100 million scheme, which includes sale of parkland for luxury residential apartments, now seems unlikely to proceed. Following withdrawal of Government funding, the London Mayor proposes to absorb the LDA into the Greater London Authority and to devolve responsibility for London’s parks to the Mayor’s office. Peter Bishop, deputy chief executive of the LDA said: “…in cases where there are no capital funds available we are putting them on hold. We’re not funding anything unless there is a prospect of it being built.”
CPCA AGM Thursday 30th June 2011 7.30 pm promptly please at the Goodliffe Hall, Christ Church Highland Road, off Gipsy Hill, London SE19 All members are warmly invited to come and meet the committee, hear reports and ask questions. Business will include discussion on the CPCA challenge to the LDA Masterplan application for Crystal Palace Park, Triangle issues, the uncertainty surrounding the Upper Norwood Library, planning in the Triangle Conservation Area and more. This year we are fortunate to have as our guest speaker Dr Adrian Hills who will speak on the life and times of John Logie Baird and his work here at Crystal Palace. As always, home-made refreshments will be provided.
2011-12 Subscriptions Subscriptions for 2011-12 were due on 1st March 2011. Many thanks to those who remembered. If your sub is overdue please send a cheque, payable to the ‘CPCA’ to: Membership Secretary c/o 10 Jasper Road, SE19 1SJ.
Prompt payment would be most appreciated to avoid the need for reminders. We are pleased to say that subscription rates remain the same as last year: £8 (£5 concessions) per household but donations are always very gratefully received.
Please let us know if your contact details have changed.
TEAM BRAZIL OLYMPIC ATHLETES BASED AT NSC The National Sports Centre in Crystal Palace Park will be the TEAM BRAZIL training camp for their 2012 elite Olympic athletes and football stars. Around 200 competitors plus trainers and other support staff are expected to use the facilities prior to the Olympics. The team’s safety, security and travel arrangements will be a high priority, in their use of the sports centre and stay in the UK.
The use of the NSC will be a major boost for the venue following the London Development Agency’s £18 million refurbishment of the ailing sports centre. NSC use by the Brazilians is expected to bring financial benefits to businesses in the Triangle and surrounding area during their stay.
...FROM THE CHAIR Membership renewal I sincerely apologise for the delay in notifying our members of their 2011 membership renewal. Many did realise that their membership fees were due on 1 March and have dutifully sent them in, while others have relied on the CPCA to remind them. We had hoped to have the Spring newsletter, with its membership reminder, distributed in good time, unfortunately preparation for our legal challenge and other events prevented this. With our legal challenge pending and many local issues requiring our attention, it is vital that we maintain a strong community voice if we are to effectively continue with our work. Do please renew your membership today!
The CPCA needs YOU CPCA membership numbers remain strong. However we, like some other societies, have difficulty in recruiting members for our Committee(s). In the longterm the CPCA needs new people to come forward to provide essential continuity. Achieving this is not easy, as people need to be committed and perhaps, most importantly, have time to devote to the Association. This form of voluntary work is ideal for those who have some time to spare - perhaps part timers, retirees, those who are simply ‘between jobs’. Human resource is everything. Members with experience of planning legislation would be particularly welcome as would those who are good at organising events. Website management, IT skills and newsletter/leaflet distributors are also needed along with a team to work on membership recruitment. Page 4
We also need someone with administrative and secretarial experience to take on the role of Honorary Secretary. If you want to play a part in your association and perhaps could provide particular expertise, then please do complete the ballot form included with this newsletter or just contact us for more information.
been a better time for wealthy speculators to purchase properties at a ‘knock-down’ price as the councils seek to maximise the cash returns from their (our) assets. Indeed this may be the fate of our own Upper Norwood Library if Lambeth and Croydon decide that they will no longer fund its operation.
FOR SALE – Allotments, Parks and Playing fields
I find it inconsistent that Alan Novitzky, the Inspector who conducted the planning inquiry on the Park Masterplan application, found NO FAULT with any part of the 11,500 page LDA application yet found significant fault with the CPCA’s evidence at the inquiry. The Inspector’s irritation with the CPCA was evident from the start, when at the pre-inquiry meeting he refused to allow the CPCA and others sufficient time to prepare evidence - vital if he was to properly consider the LDA application. The Inspector only agreed to have it held locally after the CPCA revealed that Bromley had misled him by stating that there was no suitable local venue, when in fact the Salvation Army Hall in Westow Street had previously confirmed to Bromley that their hall was available for the period of the inquiry. Things got worse! Much effort and attention was applied in raising the CPCA 7,000 signature petition. The CPCA was scrupulously fair in explaining all the features of the LDA Masterplan to those invited to sign the petition - even to the extent of providing LDA Masterplan promotional material. Yet in the Inspector's Report, the petition was demeaned as having, “…misrepresented the extent, location and impact of the residential component of the proposals...” It later emerged that the Inspector's criticism relied upon a map falsely claimed by the LDA to have accompanied the CPCA
Over the past few years thousands of playing fields have been sold off for commercial development. This is despite the so-called ‘protection’ afforded them. Now it’s the turn of the allotments. Eric Pickles, the Communities Secretary, is preparing plans to free local authorities from a 103year-old obligation to provide plots of public land for cultivation by gardeners. The proposals could see local authorities, many of them strapped for cash under government-imposed cuts, selling-off allotment land for social housing or even for profit to major companies. This is of course the same Eric Pickles who approved the LDA Masterplan application that included the sale of Crystal Palace parkland for private luxury apartments. His precedent-setting decision can be considered a ‘green-light ‘by developers, or cash-strapped authorities, for development on the UK’s public parks. All that’s needed is spurious justification of ‘very special circumstances’ and a token Section 106 agreement for good measure and you have the same scenario as we have at Crystal Palace Park.
Asset Disposal The nation’s fire sale doesn’t stop at parks. Across the land local authorities are selling-off our historic, and often listed, buildings to commercial developers. There has never
The perfect application?
petition. No map was ever included in the CPCA petition against residential and commercial development in Crystal Palace Park, BUT a map was included with an on-line petition that had absolutely nothing to do with the CPCA. It is a matter of concern that Dr Novitsky, Principal Planning Inspector at the Planning Inspectorate, with all the resources available to him, failed to establish this cardinal distinction, and his criticisms were therefore both ill judged and baseless.
People power makes a difference I was proud to be a ‘founder member’ of the original Crystal Palace Campaign, an ad-hoc group dedicated to defeating the massive multiplex proposed by Bromley for the hilltop of our historic and much-loved Park. The success of the Campaign became legendary. Mass rallies and marches, huge public meetings that included politicians and other prominent people, a 50,000 signature delivered to Downing Street, extensive national press and TV coverage, High Court legal challenges and referral to the European Court. Finally, after Bromley spent millions policing the Park and evicting environmental protesters, the scheme collapsed and Bromley Council was taken to the European Court. People objected to the sale of public parkland for commercial development and recognised the precedent it would set. Well, here we are again – only this time it is housing; more insidious perhaps, but even more damaging as it will not only threaten Crystal Palace Park but all UK parks. We must be just as resolute in our opposition to this if we are to pass on our heritage to future generations. John Payne
ALIVE AND WELL ... THE REAL PARK MASTER PLAN During stakeholder discussions and the Local Public Inquiry, supporters of the proposed LDA Masterplan described Crystal Palace Park as dilapidated and rundown, and the alarmist threat frequently used was ‘something must be done, we can’t go on like this’. After one of the coldest winters on record, the early summer weather brought thousands to Crystal Palace Park enjoying the sunshine in a beautiful setting of grassy banks and trees and shrubs in spring foliage, that was anything but ‘dilapidated and rundown’. The CPCA conducted a survey amongst Park users over two week-ends, who when told that the Park was under threat of sale of part of it for residential development under LDA Masterplan proposals, which included further loss of parkland, at first simply refused to believe it, saying this was not possible as public parks were protected and safe. When told that despite Grade II* registration and Metropolitan
Open Land status of the Park, some of which is within the Conservation Area, Bromley Council and Secretary of State Eric Pickles had approved the LDA Masterplan application, many people became furious. It is abundantly clear that despite the ‘hype’ and costly promotional campaigning of those supporting the LDA Masterplan there remains overwhelming stakeholder opposition to it. Following withdrawal of Government LDA funding and proposed abolition of the LDA it is virtually certain that the £100 million+ LDA Masterplan will remain just a plan! Providentially, a master plan more powerful than the LDA, Bromley Council and other parties to the LDA Masterplan, that will not be subject to the hypocrisy of politicians and other petty bureaucracy, is at work annually regenerating and restoring Crystal Palace Park ... It is the Master Plan of Nature. Mike Warwick Page 5
PA R K R E P O RT Good News Bromley have finally replaced the ugly, high wood and grill fencing that surrounded the tidal lake and dinosaurs, originally installed on ‘health and safety’ grounds after the Gustafson Heritage Lotteryfunded landscaping scheme. The new metre-high green metal ‘bowtop’ railings form an attractive safety feature, more in keeping with the historic Park. Another welcome improvement is the overhaul of the waterfall cascade near the dinosaurs, which fell into disrepair after the pumps and associated equipment failed some years ago. The reinstated
New friendlier fencing and a welcome return of the waterfall in the dinosaur park system also provides vital oxygenation to the ‘tidal’ lake – vital to the well-being of fish and other creatures. But, there is one small threat to the reliable and continuing function of the water feature – American Crayfish. Apparently these alien, invasive and destructive creatures abound in the tidal lake and are routinely sucked into the water system, causing blockages and pump malfunction. Bromley are currently considering ways of resolving this problem. The recent improvements and extension to the playground at the Penge end of Crystal Palace Park are welcomed by children and parents but the community has been asking why a few thousand of the many millions spent on consultants over the last ten years could not have been found for a second playground at the Upper Norwood end, plus some much needed toilet facilities - reduced to one in the whole 200-acre park after the recent arson attack. It is interesting to note that extra toilet facilities for the Park were a low priority of the LDA Masterplan.
Bad News Arson attacks in the Park continue to cause concern. The men’s toilet near the Thicket Road entrance has been destroyed and the ladies-only facilities have had to become ‘unisex’, with just two cubicles available for men. These are now the only public toilets in the whole 200 acre Park. The National Sports Centre building has also been subject to a recent attack, when arsonists set fire to the car tyres used by the model car racers, damaging the external façade of the building. Arson attacks are now becoming commonplace with other fires having been set around the Park, fortunately - so far, without serious consequences. Page 6
Arsonists damage the National Sports Centre
Bromley To Cut Park Ser vices
Some rangers have worked in the Park for many years and organise dinosaur and nature clubs, children’s holiday Buzz events, school visits and Park walks and talks in addition to dealing with lost dogs and children. Without the permanent Ranger service security will be compromised and there is uncertainty as to whether the Park will continue to be locked at night.
The new face of community friendy park ‘rangers’?
Bromley plan to cut their expenditure by £52.5 million over the next four years. Park services will be included in these ‘economies’ and it is possible that Crystal Palace Park will lose its Ranger service. This dedicated
team do much more than just day to day duties, such as patrolling and manning the Information Centre where they give advice on the history of the Park, help with directions and they even provide free dog waste bags.
If the Park loses its rangers, all their services will be lost and replaced by the ‘flying’ visits of a private security company, with their dogs, and the occasional visit from a few retained borough-wide ‘roving’ rangers to clean-up after any problems. The dire consequence for Bromley’s only historic, Grade II* registered Park may be an increase in anti-social behaviour, such as burned-out cars and fly-tipping.
The Friends of Crystal Palace Park The Friends of Crystal Palace Park (FoCPP) have been working with Bromley and Park Rangers to put together a funding bid to secure some money to help restore the old original Paxton fountain and basin. The basin itself, adjacent to Capel Manor College, is currently in a poor state of repair, full of silt and self-sown willow trees and is fenced off with no access to the public. Our aim is to restore the heritage site as well as to provide an accessible and pleasant spot, in the form of a ‘sensory’ garden, for users of the farm and Park. We also hope that the area will be improved for local wildlife by
Paxton’s original fountain near the NSC and former home of the pink flamingoes
planting the restored fountain basin with appropriate plants and shrubs to sustain wildlife habitats. We have spoken to many Park users, all of whom are keen to see the historic feature restored to public use and enjoyment. If you would like to show your support for this project please write to the Friends' Treasurer, Vicki Papworth on email@example.com
Your letters will be included with our funding bid. If you'd like to join the Friends as we work in the Park or receive any further information, please get in touch with committee member Craig Richardson, firstname.lastname@example.org We meet by the Rangers Hut every second Sunday at 2pm. Vicki Papworth, Treasurer FoCPP Page 7
CAPEL MANOR - COLLEGE OR FARM? ‘Capel Manor College’ in Crystal Palace Park was an LDA initiative, lauded as the ‘new farm’ to replace the popular facility that closed several decades earlier. It was also to function as a college, offering courses in animal care, horticulture, environmental studies and arboriculture. Bromley approved the College’s application and it opened to the public in April 2008.
A major concern of many who visit are the cramped and poor living conditions of some animals who spend much of the day in small pens with concrete floors or enclosures barely covered with sparsely scattered straw. Rabbits in hutches have no access to grass and only a small concrete floor as an exercise area. There is no public access to these rabbits and birds in this part of the Farm. The pig has use of a narrow strip of land behind the pens.
When they have time, staff and students ‘exercise’ the animals in the farm’s small courtyard and overgrown paddock. In the evenings the larger animals are returned to their stables. A member of staff admitted to the CPCA that it might be seen by some visitors as, “a disappointing experience…but that it was better than nothing. We’re not a city farm but a college where the public can come and look…It would be nice if we had some more of the Park.” It is clear that the College’s limited staff do their best with the inadequate and poorly designed animal facilities, inherited from the Kathryn Gustafson era. However, the poor quality of life for the animals will be raised by the CPCA with the appropriate animal protection agencies.
Whilst the College provides commendable facilities for education and training, it fails to deliver the public benefits originally promised. A number of signs have recently appeared in the Park advertising the College’s presence, but these fail to mention the limited ‘attractions’ on offer or the restricted opening times. The poorly-advertised farm is only open between 12 noon and 4pm and closed on Wednesdays. No chance for an after-school visit before tea and homework. Page 8
Crystal Palace Football Club plans move to the Park Readers may be aware of the recent statement from the Crystal Palace Football Club (CPFC) outlining their ambition to relocate from their existing ground at Selhurst Park to their claimed ‘spiritual’ roots in Crystal Palace Park. They intend to submit a planning application to Bromley Council for the demolition of the existing sports stadium in the centre of the Park, currently leased from Bromley by the London Development Agency (LDA), and construct a purpose built privately owned 40,000 seat football stadium for the club. The club hope to achieve this by 2015. The existing listed National Sports Centre (NSC) building with its indoor uses would remain, but without the 50-metre pool. The present athletics track would be replaced by a smaller ‘community’ track and sports ground behind the NSC. CPFC say they will fund much of this work through the sale of their present Selhurst Park grounds, although Croydon planning rules show that the Selhurst Park pitch, designated ‘Local Open Land’, must be maintained for activities involving leisure or similar uses. Croydon Councillor Jason Perry, Cabinet Member for Planning and Conservation, said: “As far as the council is concerned, Selhurst Park is a sports venue and it will remain that way. It’s not a plot of land that someone can buy and then seek to turn into a housing estate. Our existing planning policies restrict the use of Selhurst Park, and policy that’s emerging through the new local development framework will offer at very least the same level of protection”. Assuming this policy is maintained - preventing the sale for housing development, then the value of the Selhurst Park land would be significantly reduced. However CPFC Chairman, Steve Parish, said that he believes Croydon will help the club by offering to lift this restriction if
that is what is needed to ensure the sale goes ahead. Jon Rouse, Croydon’s CEO said; “Croydon Council wants to see Crystal Palace Football Club thrive on and off the pitch. While we would be sad to see the club leave the borough we will actively support a move to the National Sports Centre site if that is what is judged by owners and fans to be in the best interests of the club.” CPFC press material and the ‘Eagles Fly Home’ document that was presented at the Club’s January 2011 press conference give the following information: Build costs and funding: • Build costs are expected to be in the region of £50 million for phase one • Naming rights • Principle funding will arise from the sale and redevelopment of Selhurst Park • Pre-sold debenture seats • Pre-sold corporate hospitality • Supplemented by shareholder funds as necessary or by third party investment perhaps small borrowing. Revenue: • The main income will be generated from the use of the football club • Second sports team to be investigated, rugby union etc. • Unique parkland setting, ideal for summer concerts • Non match-day hospitality • Advertising • Hotel and conference centre • Elite sports academy • Other opportunities are being explored. The following is how the Football Club describe their new stadium and associated proposals; • A unique facility residing in one of London’s largest parks • May start life as a reduced capacity 25,000 seat stadium. In its 40,000 capacity version it could feature: • 50 x 10 person executive boxes • One VIP suite for up to 80 persons - these can be balanced with available pitch frontage for
other hospitality spaces • Two banqueting/lounges at 500800 capacity with pitch views (greater views with less boxes) • Potential community/hotel space • Bar/lounge for 200 persons, no pitch view • up to 1,000 sq.m. office space • 1,000 sq.m. club shop • 300 sq.m. media • 200 sq.m. players' facilities. Other comments on the CPFC’s ambitious plans include Kate Hoey MP, the London Mayor’s Commissioner for Sport who said: “It is encouraging to see people coming forward with positive, innovative solutions for the future of Crystal Palace. Crystal Palace FC has been at the heart of that community for well over 100 years and I know they have been working hard to secure the support of all the key local stakeholders. I welcome their interest in the site and look forward to seeing more detail on what they have to offer to the local community and to London as a whole.” Jim Dowd MP for Lewisham West and Penge: “Crystal Palace FC is a vital part of the community here in our corner of South East London just as professional football clubs are throughout the country. The possibility to return to their original “home” and thus achieve long term security together with providing a sustainable future for the Stadium site is an opportunity that is unlikely ever to occur again and thus it must be given every chance to succeed. Although there are many legitimate questions to be raised and answered before any progress can be made I am grateful for the openness the Club have shown and for the opportunity I have had to meet with them to discuss the proposal. I hope very much that it is possible to achieve a solution which will benefit the whole area.” Ed Warner Chairman of UK Athletics said: “On the proviso that the Olympic Stadium retains its athletics track and any redevelopment of Crystal Palace maintains a community athletics facility on or nearby the park we would be supportive of the plans of Crystal Palace Football Club.” Page 9
History of the club In 1861 an amateur football club played in the private grounds of the Crystal Palace Company. Formed by the tradesmen who maintained Paxton’s great glass ‘Palace’, they adopted the club name ‘Glaziers’. The present Crystal Palace Football Club, founded in 1905, played its home games at the ground rented from The Crystal Palace Company, where they played until 1914. The outbreak of war and the requisition of the Company’s land by the Admiralty forced the club to move to Herne Hill before moving to a stadium at Selhurst, originally home to Croydon Common FC. In 1924 the CPFC moved to the purposebuilt Selhurst Park stadium where it has played for 87 years.
Previous CPFC applications For many years, under different ownerships, the CPFC have expressed interest in relocating to Crystal Palace Park. These ambitions culminated in the submission in 1991 of two outline applications to Bromley Council for a 35,000 seat multi purpose stadium with underground and surface parking for coaches and 2,500 cars and associated access roads. The first application envisaged conversion and extension of the existing National Sports Centre, while the second was for a new stadium - additional to the NSC. There was considerable local opposition to both proposals, with Bromley refusing both applications on eleven grounds. These included the proposal(s) being contrary to various Bromley policies, MOL designation, the bulk and scale of the development, its impact on the Park and the Conservation Area, strategic views, setting of a listed building (the NSC pavilion), crowds, heavy traffic movements and street parking issues, especially when other events were being held in the NSC, and that the proposal would be detrimental to the continued public enjoyment of Crystal Palace Park’s recreational, sporting and other facilities, and its historic landscape. CPTCA newsletters of the time show that its members strongly opposed the club’s application.
Would a football stadium impact positively or be a blight on Crystal Palace Park?
In 2004, the CPCA gave evidence, at Local Public Inquiry, against certain elements of Bromley’s then emerging Unitary Development Plan (UDP). One concern for the CPCA was the Major Developed Site (MDS) status of the NSC. The Inspector recognised both our and others concerns in her recommendations, later incorporated into Bromley’s adopted UDP with the following stipulations: “…any infill or redevelopment proposal should: (i) improve the openness of the Park or have no greater impact on the purposes of including the NSC land and the Park in MOL; (ii) not exceed the height of the existing National Sports Centre building or the athletics stadium; (iii) enhance the visual amenities of the Park landscape; (iv) contribute to the achievement of the objectives for the long term regeneration of the Park, including integration with the parkland surroundings; (v) be restricted for indoor or outdoor sporting uses only, with facilities ancillary to those primary uses”. Despite approval of the LDA ‘Masterplan’, CPFC has entered into talks with the LDA, Bromley and others, concerning the takeover of the NSC area of the Park. The CPFC computer generated drawings of the stadium development show it set within the proposed Masterplan landscape. (The original LDA Masterplan proposal for this area of the Park envisaged a radical new
design for a Regional Sports Centre incorporating a reduced capacity stadium as a replacement for the existing facilities.) This CPFC initiative is at a time of continuing uncertainty on the future of Crystal Palace Park following withdrawal of all government LDA funding and Bromley’s wish to reduce costs of maintenance and other provisions for Crystal Palace Park. The club’s co-chairman, Steve Parish is quoted as saying, “We are delighted to put forward our plans to return the club home to where it all began. We believe a stadium at Crystal Palace Park can help create a bright new future for the club as well as helping to breathe new life into both the sports centre and the park”, while Bromley Council Leader, Councillor Stephen Carr says, “Crystal Palace Football Club have spoken to us and we are very interested in their proposal to relocate the Club to Crystal Palace Park. These are potentially exciting times for Crystal Palace Park and of course, we would need to look very carefully at the merits of any proposal. These fresh visionary ideas are welcome and ultimately, we want to improve the park and the wider area and any viable plan to improve the park could have a positive impact on the locality and secure a brighter future. Of course, we will consider all proposals on their merits and would be subject to the planning permission in the usual way.” There can be no doubt that the CPFC’s relocation to Crystal Palace
Park would radically change the Park’s ethos - more in keeping with the stated intention of the LDA to make it a ‘major events Park’. The huge numbers arriving or leaving the stadium will have to use the Park grounds, and new roads and walkways may need to be built. The surrounding area may also suffer significant change. The CPFC’s presentation makes no mention of traffic or parkin, but this issue cannot be ignored. Many thousands of cars are likely to descend on the area on match days. Other planned events and uses, necessary to produce year round revenue, will also generate greatly increased traffic. As most of us know, local roads struggle to cope with existing traffic density. Restrictions including temporary road closure, controlled parking zones and residents’ parking permits will be required over large areas of Upper Norwood, Anerley, Penge and parts of Sydenham and Dulwich. As at Selhurst Park, policing of streets and rail/bus stations on match and event days will be mandatory. The CPCA has consistently opposed large-scale commercial development of ‘protected’ Grade II* registered, MOL-designated Crystal Palace Park, and has fought a series of battles in this cause. Currently the CPCA is challenging the decision of the Secretary of State to approve the sale of irreplaceable public parkland for construction of luxury blocks of flats, as part of the London Development Agency ‘Masterplan’ application. Accordingly, the CPCA must know the views of members on the CPFC ‘s proposal to re-locate to the Park. Do you believe this will result in increased levels of traffic and parking problems for residents, other adverse environmental consequences, and be against the long-term interests of the Park, or that it will provide financial security to the NSC and Park, and possibly some local businesses? Please let us have your response as soon as possible.
THE POLITICS OF PLANNING When Bromley Councillor Colin Smith was asked during BBC Radio 4's PM Programme, “Isn’t it the case that here in Bromley, that if planners thought of it differently, you could find the odd corner of open space, parkland or that sort of thing, where jobs could be created?” Councillor Smith replied, “I think you'd find yourself hanging from the nearest lamppost if you suggested that any of our parks should have corners snipped off them and built on, and that certainly would be by my position.” Whilst the CPCA hopes Councillor Smith's position will not be hanging from the nearest lamppost, clearly his statement, made the day after George Osborne's Spring Budget including greater freedom for councils in planning decisions under their Localism Bill, is at variance with the decision of Bromley Council to approve sale of parkland for luxury residential development under the LDA Crystal Palace Park Masterplan application. The LDA Crystal Palace Park Masterplan was formally objected to by The Norwood Society, Sport England, Crystal Palace Community Association, Joseph Paxton Society, Crystal Palace Foundation, Ridge Wildlife Group, Lambethans, Open Spaces Society, Residents of north-side of Anerley Hill and West Beckenham Residents Association, and by individuals too numerous to detail. Seven thousand people signed a petition against sale of Crystal Palace parkland for residential development and local opposition to the Masterplan is overwhelming.
Yet Cllr Smith continued, “…We're absolutely in favour of local people's opinions being respected and, to that extent, support these proposals because we believe that everything we do in Bromley represents what people actually want…It will be interesting to see how it breaks down, but regarding the development of Metropolitan Open Space and Urban Open Land, which fundamentally is our parks, we don't think people would support that at all.” Cllr Smith's assurances, although most welcome, were little in evidence when Bromley Planning Committee approved sale of part of the Grade II* registered Crystal Palace Park to commercial developers for the construction of luxury housing for the privileged few. Grant Shapps, Minister of State for Housing and Planning, when asked if local people had the right to object to a development, said, “Yes, if that's what's in the local plan. If the local plan says, and by the way there's no chance of local parks and all the rest of it being built over, the local people will be absolutely, I’m quite sure and quite rightly, writing local plans which don't involve that sort of thing.” Grant Shapps then invited local people to file plans that will provide them with, “...the protection or the vision to create the area that they actually want to see for their local community”. Many believe this is something politicians are elected and paid to do. Just like Election Manifestos, assurances and undertakings by politicians concerning local issues remain just that, with little evidence of proper consideration of local community interests in planning decisions remotely taken by the few, that adversely affect so many. Page 11
Views Trust Us We’re the Croydon Planning Committee If local authorities continue to neglect their duty of planning control and sympathetic building design, there will soon be little left to conserve in the Upper Norwood Triangle Conservation Area, and the character of the Triangle that attracts niche businesses, which bring visitors and revenue, is in danger of being lost for ever. Disturbingly, Croydon have ‘persuaded’ English Heritage to remove the Triangle from their register of ‘Conservation Areas at Risk’. Compelling evidence of the increasing erosion of conservation standards can be seen in the recent controversial approval of planning applications by the officers and councillors, comprising Croydon Planning Committee - despite strong local opposition. Planning guidance clearly states that developments in conservation areas should ‘preserve and enhance’. A number of proposed developments in the Triangle will assist some of Croydon’s ‘Core Strategy’ targets but will do little to ‘preserve and enhance’ its historic character.
Victory Place St Aidans Developments Victory Place scheme for 25 one-bed, 3 two-bed and 8 three-bed flats, together with commercial frontage on Page 12
Westow Street, was approved in 2008. Since then nothing has happened save the arrival of a used car lot which failed to gain planning permission and operates in breach of the law, on land rented from St Aidans. Having taken no enforcement action for over a year with complaints from the CPCA and others remaining unanswered, the CPCA had no option but to refer the matter to Croydon’s official complaints procedure – the first stage before referral to the government ombudsman. Croydon Council finally served an enforcement notice on 20 April 2011, which allows the owners of the site 28 days in which to appeal. Failure to do so means they have three months from 18 May in which to remove the car sales business and clear the site of everything associated with the business.
enable construction of a modern four-storey block. The CPCA can show that demolition of the site began several months before the scheme received planning consent. Croydon ignored this serious breach of planning law, no doubt on the basis they would eventually approve it, no matter what local objections were made.
Once planning approval was granted, developers Burstow 51-59 Westow Street and Kaye proceeded with the the Post Office scheme despite not owning The Post Office and associated land essential to the development at 51-59 Westow development. Street required demolition of The Fireplace Shop, a longhistoric two-storey shops to established family business, located in the rear courtyard of the new development, has made it clear they are not prepared to sell their freehold. Failure by Burstow Kaye to acquire this land from the outset ensured the scheme could not satisfy the conditions on which the original application had been approved, resulting in the submission of a second application, which was not, as might be expected, a retrospective application. Opportunity for objection and comment on this second Councillors view the controversial development scheme existed during a statutory ‘consultation’ period during a long overdue site visit.
that happened to coincide with the Christmas and New Year holiday break. A major concern with the ‘new’ application was the access and egress of vehicle and pedestrian movement within the restricted rear courtyard, and Croydon’s Planning Committee deferred their decision on the new application until after a site visit. CPCA representations to the planning committee identifying critical flaws in the applicant’s second application were not acknowledged. Planning committee Chair, Cllr Richard Chatterjee, attempted to restrict CPCA verbal statements during consideration of the second application, which, despite having plans before them giving incorrect dimensions and vehicle tracking movements, was unanimously approved by the planning committee.
The Fireplace Shop access to their premises from Westow Street is limited to a narrow corridor.
Croydon plans 800 new homes for Crystal Palace According to Croydon’s recently published Core Strategy consultation document*, which will determine the future of the borough, 3 , 6 0 0 new homes will be built in the North Croydon area from 2012 to 2031. Of these, 800 are destined for Crystal Palace/Upper Norwood, although the document fails to identify where sufficient development land is to be found. Recently Croydon has granted permission for several controversial high-density apartment blocks in the heart of the Crystal Palace Triangle Conservation Area, and yet more are in prospect. Croydon argues in the document that: “the East London Line not only improves accessibility it also makes it more attractive to housing developers”, but then, in contradiction, continues: “…despite good and improving public transport accessibility [Crystal Palace/Upper Norwood] has relatively low homes growth potential … due to a number of factors including Conservation Area status and the limited number of development sites.” The Chairs of Croydon's Neighbourhood Partnerships have raised serious concerns over the veracity and accuracy of elements of this Core Strategy document. *The Core Strategy consultation document is part of Croydon’s emerging Local Development Framework, successor to the Unitary Development Plan. The 3,600 dwellings are planned for the ‘North Spatial Management Area’ that comprises Crystal Palace/Upper Norwood, Norbury, South Norwood & Woodside, and Thornton Heath.
Unexpected departure of Croydon Planning Officers During representations to Croydon objecting to 51-59 Westow Street redevelopment, the CPCA identified failings and irregularities and questioned whether duty of care and due process had been applied in considering and finally approving such application. These CPCA concerns were copied directly to Croydon Chief Executive, Jon Rouse. Two senior planning officers have now left Croydon this year. The first was Michael O’Brien, who was the case officer for the controversial 51-59 Westow Street (Post Office) redevelopment, as well as other development proposals in the Triangle. In a surprise move, Emma Peters, Croydon’s executive director of Planning, Regeneration and Conservation will be leaving her £140,000 per year job (plus benefits) to join ‘Regenfirst’, a specialist consultancy offering “professional regeneration services” to many councils around the country.
If you care about the area, join the CPCA. Together, your voice counts. Page 13
LIBRARY FACES UNCERTAIN FUTURE Last summer, our unique and much-loved library - the only remaining independently managed public library in this country - celebrated its 110th anniversary. The Upper Norwood Joint Library has served the people of Crystal Palace for more than eleven decades and the Anniversary Weekend of July 3rd and 4th 2010 saw thousands of local residents enjoying special events and activities to mark its continuing popularity. The Joint Library Agreement between Lambeth and Croydon obliges both boroughs to provide equal funding each year. Since 1983, this has happened only once. The enduring popularity of the Joint Library has been achieved against all odds, with the service suffering from years of underinvestment by both boroughs. Its budget for this year carries the equivalent of a 20% cut in real terms. The cost of the UNJL library service totalled £387,000 in 2008-09. The average cost of one of Croydon’s thirteen libraries in the same financial year was £606,607. Consequent to shared funding with Lambeth, Croydon only paid £176,000 for the UNJL in 2008-09, £430,000 less than the average cost of its own libraries. This is a bargain, considering that the Joint Library is around twice the size of most of Croydon’s libraries and should be considered as the economic model for other library services.
In Croydon, six of a total of thirteen libraries are threatened with closure, while in Lambeth, two mobile libraries will be withdrawn this year (Croydon’s mobile library disappeared two years ago) and a public consultation began in April on the future of Lambeth’s libraries. Both Lambeth and Croydon are expected to make announcements about the future of their library services this July.
The Joint Library has survived two World Wars, the Great Depression of the 1930s and
Local councillor Pat Ryan speaks passionately against threat to the Library With Bromley’s Anerley and Penge libraries facing closure and two out of three Croydon libraries in the north of the borough under threat, the library services in this area would become virtually non-existent. If this wasn’t enough, the government has decided to review legislation that may be seen as ‘burdensome’ to local authorities. Under review is the 1964 Public Libraries and Museums Act, which obliges local authorities to
PLEASE JOIN THE L I B R A RY C A M PA I G N The Upper Norwood Library Campaign urges you, your friends and neighbours to join us. Membership forms are available in the Library where you can sign up immediately or write to: The Secretary, UNLC, 5 Becondale Road, London SE19 1QJ Membership is £3 p.a. (£1.50 retired/unwaged) Page 14
provide a comprehensive and efficient library service’ to all those who wish to use it. With many local authorities seemingly regarding their library service as an unnecessary expense, there are real fears that our legal right to a public library service may soon disappear altogether.
numerous severe recessions since it first opened to the public in 1900. It provides opportunities for life-long learning, a brilliant Children’s Library that helps to create a love of books and reading in our kids from babies onwards, access to information and informal education, local history resources, a fantastic programme of special events and activities each year and a free and welcoming space to benefit the whole community.
The CPCA, the Upper Norwood Library Campaign, Councillors and others maintain that our costeffective Library should not be closed, cut, nor subsumed into the library service of Croydon or Lambeth Council.
Are you switched on yet? The Crystal Palace TV transmitter is due to go fully ‘digital’ on 4 April 2012 – in plenty of time to enjoy the full spectacle of the Olympics. The old analogue signal will be switched off and all TVs must be capable of receiving the new digital signals. This can be achieved by buying a relatively cheap Freeview set-top box (standard or high definition) or by investing in one of the later flat screen plasma or LCD televisions. These new TVs are a revelation in picture quality with some capable of displaying internet connected services such as iPlayer, satellite broadcasts or even 3D pictures. Should you need an excuse to buy a new television then this is it. Just make sure that you look at all the options and obtain some good advice if you need it. You won’t be disappointed. Contact: Digital UK on 08456 505050 or visit www.digitaluk.co.uk
Crystal Palace Norwood Heights written by Brian Dann and Audrey Hammond, designed by Mike Conrad. Obtainable from the CPCA 020 8670 4395 email@example.com
and our local bookshops
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Antenna Studios on the move Antenna Studios, near Haynes Lane Market in the Triangle, recently unveiled their relocation plans. The studio, which has been operating since 2002, provides a valuable facility to individuals and professionals involved in music and dance, film and photography. Antenna plan to relocate to 22 Westow Hill (opposite Iceland), a large refurbished two-storey premises that has been empty for the best part of 10 years, seeing it as an ideal location for a dedicated venue for the arts. The ground floor will comprise foyer/ communication point, bar and snack bar, information screens advertising local events and
performances and a sound-proofed music section for live bands and DJs with capacity for 80 people. The upper floor, open during the day and in the evenings, will provide café, acoustic stage with grand piano, projection screens, bar and roof garden. This area will hold 120 people seated for acoustic performances as well as film nights and the digital arts. Antenna will be seeking a change of use from A3 (Restaurant/cafes) to D2 (Assembly and leisure). After so many years of 22 Westow Hill lying idle, the CPCA welcomes this new use, but hopes that Antenna will be mindful of the usual planning and community issues of excessive noise, opening hours, licence conditions, late night drinking, early hour movements and parking.
Antenna’s production and other services will move to premises in Paxton Mews at the rear of the new Westow Street post office development. It is understood that Antenna’s existing facilities, including the buildings associated with Haynes Lane Market, will be demolished to make way for further residential development, possibly including some business or retail usage. The same developer was responsible for the controversial retail and residential scheme opposite Sainsbury’s and the new housing currently being built behind the shops opposite the Library on Westow Hill, all of which contribute to Croydon’s 800 new homes ‘Core Strategy’ target for this area of their borough.
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POLICING M AT T E R S On yer bike! If you listen to the Government you would think they are cutting red tape and bureaucracy in the police. However, when a local business offered to sponsor a new mountain bike for one of our Safer Neighbourhood Teams it became apparent this is not always the case. There are two ways for the police to acquire pedal cycles; either order them from the only company that makes them specifically for the police or go to a bike dealership such as Evans. If they choose the first they know that a premium has been charged which is passed on, rather embarrassingly, to the company offering sponsorship. The bicycle must then be registered with the borough and the purchase authorised by the police central department, with a contract being drawn up between police and sponsor, with the borough keeping a local record. This option does at least mean that bikes will be supplied in police livery. Should the police choose the second option to save money the problem of livery arises as the company that produces the decals etc are only interested in multiple orders. The result is that either the sponsors have to pay over the odds or face a problem with the livery.
For the last six months there has been no budget available for the police’s purpose-designed cyclists’ uniforms so, even if the red tape was unravelled and a bike purchased, police officers without the kit would not be able to use it. Meanwhile in central London, Mayor Boris Johnson is expanding his network of public cycle hire from the present 5,000 to 7,000 bikes.
Red Tape & Traffic Stats The CPCA has been affected by the police’s procedural red tape. In the past, collection of the accident statistics for the area, which we include in our newsletters, involved a phone call to our contact in the MPS ‘Performance Information Bureau’. In no time at all, an email speadsheet of our local accident statistics would arrive. Not anymore. Now we have to make an application for the information via a ‘Freedom of Information’ request. This involves completing an on-line form and a lengthy delay while our application is considered. There is no guarantee that we will obtain the information – information that the CPCA believes is essential to road safety awareness in the area. Whatever happened to the transparency and public accountability the Commissioner recently promised?
Upper Norwood Improvement Team (UNIT) UNIT is a local umbrella organisation that meets four times a year to discuss a range of matters to enable improvements to the Upper Norwood area. Invitees include council officers, councillors from five wards, Safer Neighbourhood Police Teams and representatives from a range of businesses and local amenity groups. This year UNIT will be initiating, supporting and facilitating a range of projects for the benefit of the local community. Attendance is open to local amenity groups and businesses. If you would like to know more or get involved then please email us at: email@example.com
CRYSTAL PALACE PARK CONFERENCE 20 MAY 2011 With no restrictions on note taking or reporting back to committees, the CPCA attended the 20 May 2011 Crystal Palace Park Conference at The Lodge, Crystal Palace Park. The Conference, sponsored by the Crystal Palace Campaign, Dulwich, Sydenham and Norwood Societies, was well organised and invitees enjoyed a warm welcome and excellent hospitality which was conducive to discussion on the future of the Park. Whilst the CPCA is mindful that only a tiny proportion of Park stakeholders were invited and that the glossy brochure issued to each attendee was the redundant LDA October 2007 CRYSTALPALACEPARK PASTPRESENTFUTURE, the CPCA believes that on balance the presentations and expressed views were of benefit at a stage when the LDA Masterplan cannot survive without funding as neither can the LDA for very much longer. Much respected Bromley officer Peter Martin said although there was absolutely no money available, much could be achieved at very little cost as could be seen in a number of places in the Park, and that he agreed with Mike [Warwick] that the Park was not neglected, rundown and dilapidated, but beautiful and magnificent in spring foliage. Peter was making his last attendance at discussions on Crystal Palace Park as a Bromley officer, as he is shortly to retire. The CPCA take this opportunity to wish Peter a long and fulfilling retirement. Page 17
R e p a i re d b r i d g e l e ave s d r i ve r s f a c i n g b i l l s When the re-designed and repaired Farquhar Road bridge was finally opened, motorists discovered a nasty surprise when using the designated spaces to park their vehicle. As the bridge is one-way, motorists have no choice but to reverse into the angled parking bays and now must take great care to avoid reversing into the new excessively high, concrete barrier designed, presumably, to prevent vehicles straying onto the pedestrian footway.
FarquharRoad bridge - new and improved ? Being on the motorist’s near and blind side, it is all too easy to reverse into this more than bumper-height barrier, which some have done to their considerable cost.
road surface was removed, engineers found the structure had badly corroded and more substantial repairs were required.
A further hazard on this short stretch of road was the dangerous projecting concrete corner dividing the cycle path from the road. Following CPCA representations, the engineers have now designed this out.
New kerbs ... at bumper height
The works to the bridge, opposite the bus station on Crystal Palace Parade, was originally scheduled to last a few months. However, when the old
One dangerous hazard that has been removed.
Tram extension back on Track? ======================= As part of Ken Livingstone’s bid to be elected as London Mayor, he has resurrected his original plan to extend the Croydon tram to Crystal Palace – making it his “top priority”. Following Mr Livingstone’s commitment, and not wishing to be outdone, the current Mayor Boris Johnson has also vowed to prioritise the extension. Page 18
The original plan, introduced during Mr Livingstone’s term of office, hit the buffers when the £170 million scheme was scrapped in favour of other major London based transport projects. Neither Mayoral candidate has explained just how the money will be found to fund the Tramlink extension and whether it will bring business to the area or take it away. No study has
been conducted on this rather crucial point. There is also the thorny issue of the ‘appropriateness’ of running trams, with their associated intrusive infrastructure, through a Grade II* (star) registered historic park. Imagine them ploughing their way through similarly ‘protected’ Buckingham Palace Gardens.
PA X T O N G R E E N R O U N D A B O U T C R O S S I N G S Pedestrian safety at the Paxton Green roundabout has been a concern for many years. The increased size and use of the Health Centre adds to these concerns. Particular issues include safety for pedestrians crossing the roads and speed of traffic approaching and leaving the many junctions. London Mayor, Boris Johnson, has heeded these concerns and allocated £398,000 to Southwark Council to carry out improvements to the roundabout layout and pedestrian crossing points. It is expected that this work will reduce speeding, improve traffic flow and pedestrian access through the area. The funding should enable the council to look at all aspects of the roundabout, rather than the piecemeal approach that has taken place in the past.
Westow Hill / Gipsy Hill Junction While the Paxton roundabout initiative is welcomed, the dangerous crossroads at the Westow/Gipsy Hill interchange remain a danger to pedestrians. Safety at this junction has been an issue since the introduction of the one-way system in 2002. Pedestrians still have to dash for safety as they attempt to avoid vehicles turning right and left into them. There is no pedestrian phased or Pelican/Puffin traffic light system at this very busy junction. In response to a request from the CPCA at a Neighbourhood
Partnership meeting last year, Croydon Councillor Steve O’Connell* agreed to visit this dangerous location. He has yet to find time. The CPCA continues to lobby the London Mayor and Croydon Council to have this issue addressed – hopefully before somebody is seriously injured or killed. * Croydon’s Cllr O’Connell is Croydon Cabinet Member for Community Safety, a member of the GLA’s London Assembly and a member of the Metropolitan Police Authority where he is Chair of the Finance and Resources Committee.
Whilst the problem of patients reaching the Paxton Green Health Centre from the south and east side of a busy two-lane roundabout is being addressed, the equally dangerous crossroads of Gipsy Hill and Westow/Central Hill remain.
Let us have your views
on Crystal Palace Park, the Triangle,
3-5 Westow Hill, SE19 1TQ
or planning issues that affect you.
Happy to Help You
Call the CPCA on 020 8670 4395 email: firstname.lastname@example.org or write to CPCA c/o 10 Jasper Road, Upper Norwood, London SE19 1SJ
Sefgroves Pharmacy Westow Hill will take and collect your prescriptions to or from your Doctor’s surgery.
Call 020 8670 5198 for this free service. Page 19
High density housing development permitted on railway embankment The decision by Dulwich Community Council to grant planning consent on a small triangle of land on the embankment of the London to Gatwick railway line left many in the chamber astounded. Southwarkâ€™s Planning Officers not only ignored local community concerns but failed to address the serious accusation of a major discrepancy of the site measurements. Critically, the drawings submitted by the Metropolitan Housing Trust gave the site area as 30% greater than the useable land, which was cardinal to the CPCA submission against recommendation for approval, as the inaccuracies in land measurement misrepresented the actual density of housing. The developer's rebuttal statement to CPCA objections, submitted secretly to committee and leaked to the CPCA, failed to respond to the issue of plot size and offered no specific clarification. The Community Council meeting took place in a tense atmosphere following apologies for absence from committee members, and failure of others to attend at all, resulting in the application, tabled for consideration by the nine-member
The small triangular plot of land on the railway embankment, the exact size of which is crucial to assessing housing density, was disputed but ignored.
Planning Committee, being determined by three newly-elected and inexperienced councillors and the new Chair. The vote was two against, one in favour and left the Chair to use his casting vote in favour. Craig Tunstall, Executive Head Teacher of three local schools, expressed concern that this development together with the recently approved and neighbouring Cawnpore Street development, would further increase demand for school places that were already over subscribed. Mr Tunstallâ€™s perceptive statements were neither challenged nor discussed by the Committee or Officers.
Other objections, which included a 150 signature local petition, identified lack of space for recreation, parking and disabled facilities, and the high-density of accommodation. Although, the CPCA had long regarded the Dulwich Community Council as a role model for democracy, this belief was shattered by the dearth of committee members present and the grant of approval for a development that fails to conform to Southwarkâ€™s Borough Plan, the Mayor's London Plan and other official Planning Policy Guidance. This decision was also taken with total disregard for local community concerns and flies in the face of recent government pronouncements on the desire to see greater community involvement and participation. It is evident that in the urgency to satisfy government requirements for construction of new residential accommodation, Councils are disregarding their own policies and standards , ignoring local people and simply permitting and encouraging the construction of high-density sub-standard housing.
The view from the back windows of the new development
Fond Farewell to the Rumseys Recently, while carrying out his work on one of the estates in his Parish, Andrew was seriously injured in a dog attack that required emergency surgery and a spell in hospital. He is still on crutches and has a while to go before he is fully recovered. Andrew and his lovely wife Rebecca and their three children, Grace, Jonah and Talitha have been a cohesive part of the local community. They will be greatly missed and the CPCA wish them well in their new Parish where our loss will certainly be Oxted & Tandridge’s gain.
After 10 years in residence the Reverend Andrew Rumsey, Vicar of Christ Church Gipsy Hill and highly popular vocalist, composer and lead guitarist of The Effras will be leaving us in July for pastures new. Andrew has been appointed the Rector of Oxted & Tandridge (near Godstone). In a letter to the CPCA, Andrew said, “The decision to leave has been an extremely hard one to take, as we love Gipsy Hill and have grown deep roots here. It’s been a privilege to have worked alongside you in the service of such a community”.
Book review Strangely Warmed by Andrew Rumsey our local celebrity author pens forty meditations on Lent Rev. Andrew Rumsey, vicar of Christ Church, Gipsy Hill, has recently published a book, which takes the format of forty short meditations - to tie in with the forty days of Lent. The title of the book comes from a quote by the founder of the Methodist movement, John Wesley, who described how his heart was “strangely warmed” during a meeting in London in 1738. For the Anglican Rumsey, the phrase is a way of describing how the realisation and revelation of God in the everyday can often have the most unexpected impact on us. It is well written – observant, pithy, and with a winning, naturally self-effacing style, and Rumsey is as aware as any Methodist of the stranger practices of Anglicanism, yet his response is one of humour and wry insight. The institution of the Bric-a-Brac
sale, for example, leads him to remark on the difference between the Divine and mundane: “extracting a rib from Adam’s prone form, the Lord fashioned the fathomless beauty of womankind. You can bet that Adam, presented with the same rib, would have whittled it into a pipe rack.” The humour is used as a way into an observation about our relationship with God, though the balance is sometimes uneasy. If there is one failing in the book, it is occasional flippancy, which undermines what he is trying to say. When describing the communion service – something fundamental to Christian worship - he trivialises it with a conclusion that “the PA system never works”, as if it’s just another one of life’s quirks. The impetus for the founding of the Methodist movement was dissatisfaction that the established church had lost sight of preaching the Gospel. Reading this book, the charge still stands, though it is a credit to Rumsey that he’s delivered a very readable and thought provoking study.
Emmaus offers a home Emmaus offers work Emmaus offers hope Please support the work of Emmaus to help the homeless in our community. Visit their shop on Knights Hill, near West Norwood Station Find out more on www.emmaus.org.uk or call Majonne on 020 8761 4276
Reviewed by Ben Cordle Page 21
CPCA EVENTS Thursday 30 June 2011
CPCA AGM Please see page 3 for details
Friday 10 June
Summer Quiz Night Our friendly, popular quiz nights will be hosted as usual by our resident quiz mistress Katriona. Join a team, or bring your own team of up to eight people, who hopefully know the answers! Tickets are £8 for members, £9 non-members The ticket price as always includes a fish and chip supper., or a vegetable quiche as an alternative for vegetarians ; please let us know if you prefer this option when you make your booking. Bring your own drinks, but if you forget don’t worry there will be a small choice available. Doors open 7.15 for a 7.30pm start at the Goodliffe Hall, Highland Road, off Gipsy Hill, SE19
Raffle & Prizes & Fun Phone/fax CPCA 8670 4395 or email: email@example.com
Sunday 24 July
Tuesday 23 August
The second leg of a wander along the Wandle
Dinner at Fresco’s
Continuing from last years popular recreational walk along the river Wandle, we pick up from where we left off at Morden Hall and continue to follow the river until it reaches the Thames at Wandsworth. This section of the river passes many points of interest including Merton Abbey Mills, parkland and a nature reserve. We will have lunch en route at a suitable public house.
Meet us at Beckenham Road Tram stop at 10am, where we will board the tram to Waddon for the start of our walk. Our return journey will be from Putney, with a number of public transport options on how to return to Crystal Palace. Cost of walk £5 for CPCA funds (public transport & refreshments not incuded)
64 Westow Hill, Crystal Palace This is a re-scheduled event as we planned to visit this restaurant in December but due to severe snow few were able to attend. Hopefully we’ll have better weather this time!
Join us for a meal at this Italian restaurant that has an interesting and varied menu. We plan to book the table for 7.30pm. Please let us know by Friday 19 August if you wish to come.
Tuesday 6 December
The Ghurkha Cottage 17 Westow Street, SE19 020 8771 7372 Join us for a meal at this popular Nepalese and Indian restaurant. Please let us know by Friday 2 December if you wish to attend. The table will be booked for 7.30pm.
Friends of the Horniman 20th ANNUAL ART EXHIBITION in the beautiful Victorian Conservatory of the Horniman Museum
Friday 11 November
100 London Road, Forest Hill, SE23
Same details as the quiz in June, so if you can’t make it this summer make sure you don’t miss out on this one!
Saturday 9 & Sunday 10 July - 10.30 am to 4.30 pm
Save the date now Page 22
Audrey Hammond and Mike Conrad will be exhibiting their watercolours & drawings.
Sunday 23 October
Circular walk around West Wickham
17 & 18 September 2011
OPEN HOUSE Open House London, the capital's largest architectural festival, will take place on Saturday 17 & Sunday 18 September. The Open House London Event is a simple but powerful concept: hundreds of great buildings of all types and periods open up their doors to all, completely for free. This is a unique opportunity to access and understand architecture and poses a challenge to look at everyday buildings anew.
This walk of approximately 6 miles will incorporate the rural aspects of West Wickham where we will be passing and enjoying the autumnal colours of woodland, common land, open fields, a 15th century parish church and the manor house, Wickham Court (once the home of Ann Boleyn’s Great Uncle and Aunt).
The walk will start at the Railway Hotel pub on the corner of Red Lodge Road, near West Wickham train station and swimming baths, at 10.30am As usual we will end the walk with a pub lunch. Please let us know if you plan to meet us there or would like a lift in one of the cars leaving from Crystal Palace. Cost £5 for CPCA funds (refreshments not included)
www.londonopenhouse.org Above: the view over Whitehall to the Banqueting House from Horse Guards Below: Old Operating Theatre Museum & Herb Garret, 9a St Thomas St SE1
September & October 2011
Paintings and drawings of Sydenham (mostly ink and watercolour) by
at the Kirkdale Bookshop Gallery, 272 Kirkdale, SE26 4RS
Please check exact dates nearer the time on www.kirkdalebookshop.com or ring Kirkdale Bookshop on 020 8778 4701
The Open Gardens Festival 2011 in aid of St Christopher’s Hospice Sunday 5 June 2.30 - 5.30pm 174 Peckham Rye, SE22 9QA Sunday 5 June 2 - 5pm Dulwich Village Gardens, SE21 7BJ Sunday 12 June 1 - 7pm 111 Alleyn Park, SE21 8AA Sunday 12 June 1 - 5pm 10 Homestead Road, Chelsfield Park Orpington BR6 6HW Friday 17 June 7pm onwards Highview Layhams Road, Keston BR2 6AR Sunday 19 June 2 - 5pm 8 Lucerne Road, Orpington BR6 0EP Sunday 3 July 11am - 4pm Kelsey Park Sports College Manor Way, Beckenham BR3 3SJ Saturday 16 July 1 - 6pm 9 Jews Walk, Sydenham SE26 6PJ Saturday 23 July 1 - 6pm 46 Lanbury Road, Nunhead SE15 3DB Sunday 14 August 11am - 3pm West Wickham Allotment Association Hawes Lane, BR4 9AF
A LIFE-SAVING MESSAGE FROM THE AMBULANCE SERVICE We all carry our mobile phones with names and numbers stored in its memory, but should we be involved in an accident, or taken ill, how would those attending us know who to call? Which of the hundreds of numbers stored is the contact person in case of emergency?
HENCE THE 'ICE' CAMPAIGN (IN CASE OF EMERGENCY). If the number of a ‘contact in the event of emergency’ is stored under the name ICE, emergency service personnel and hospital staff would be able to contact the right person quickly, simply by calling the ICE number. The idea came from a paramedic who found that, at the scene of an accident, the patient usually had a mobile phone, but the emergency crew had no way of knowing which was the best number to call. He thought this problem could be solved if there was a nationally recognised entry in the contact names list. For more than one contact name simply enter ICE1, ICE2, ICE3 etc. It really could save your life, or put a loved one's mind at rest. The scheme has backing from the Welsh ambulance service and Welsh assembly who believe it could help at a time when every second counts, and spending time trying to contact the next of kin can delay the start of treatment. “It is a case of helping people in distress and getting the best and most correct information about a patient, and the best use out of a mobile phone.” Falklands war veteran Simon Weston (For more visit the website of the BBC News ICE campaign) This article first appeared in our Spring 2009 edition
Denniss Matthews Solicitors Established 1791
Domestic & Commercial Conveyancing (written estimates given)
Wills & Estates Company Law Accident Claims Matrimonial and All forms of Litigation 145 Anerley Rd London SE20 8EG Tel: (020) 8778 7301/7631 Fax (020) 8778 6782 firstname.lastname@example.org www.denniss-matthews.co.uk
Bandlish Dental Surgery 5 Gipsy Hill, Upper Norwood, London SE19 1QG WELCOME TO BANDLISH DENTAL SURGERY providing all kinds of quality dentistry Monday to Friday 9am to 6 pm and Saturday 9 am to 1 pm.
EVENING EMERGENCY DENTAL Tuesdays,Wednesdays,Thursdays 5.30 pm until 7.30 pm (NHS)
PRIVATE CALL OUT SERVICE after 7.30 pm. In case of dental emergency, kindly call 07730 963 127 We aim to provide the highest out of normal surgery hours. quality of clinical care and treatment, and are committed to Continuing Professional Education to constantly upgrade our techniques. We are a very friendly, sympathetic and prevention-orientated team.
We are a modern practice located at the top of Gipsy Hill, ten minutes walk from Gipsy Hill BR station and five minutes from Crystal Palace Parade. Limited parking is available in front of the practice.
0% FINANCIAL PLAN Bandlish Dental Surgery are now able to offer a 0% interest free financial plan to enable our patients to have the treatment of their choice: cosmetic dental treatment, implants, crowns, teeth whitening and more.
Tel: 020 8670 2296, 020 8761 3609 Fax: 020 8488 4794 email: LKBandlish@aol.com www.bandlish.co.uk
We provide various services subject to consultation, including: • Cosmetic/white fillings • Implants • Crowns & Bridges • Tooth whitening • Home visits • Same-day gold fillings • Same-day denture repairs • Hygiene appointments • Prophyjet stain removal • Panoramic x-ray imaging • Orthodontic referrals • Dental photography • EMERGENCY SERVICE
CPCA c/o 10 Jasper Road, Upper Norwood, London SE19 1SJ Tel / Fax: 020 8670 4395 email@example.com
Member of the London Forum of Amenity & Civic Societies and the Open Spaces Society Registered Charity No. 261790