Protesters are derailing Council’s plan for Winstanley & York Road estate redevelopment

Author: Cyril Richert

Tree protectors are currently occupying York Gardens in order to force the Council to review their plans to redevelop the whole Winstanley and York Road estates.

On Wednesday 3 March at 12pm, tree protector Marcus, who has become the most recognisable face of York Gardens tree protest, came down from the 100-year-old black poplar tree he has been living in for 10 days. Continue reading

Déjà vu: The Winstanley and York Road regeneration plans in trouble

Author: Cyril Richert

The Winstanley and York Road regeneration plan is running out of funding even before they start phase 1. The proposed solution is to defer the leisure centre (and the controversial 32 storey tower) to concentrate on smaller towers (up to 19 storeys!). The good news is that Council had the opportunity to acquire an additional 115 shared ownership units to be converted into Council units to assist the decant of existing buildings.

The Housing and Regeneration Overview and Scrutiny Committee will meet on Thursday 11th February. The original meeting on January 20th was postponed and rumours of financial difficulties on the Winstanley and York Road project began to spread. It seems likely that the postponing of the meeting was needed to finalise a review of the project and draft new proposals. In his latest newsletter, Labour Cllr Tony Belton wrote:

“All was going well until on the 29th January we were warned that the Council’s partner in the Joint Venture project, Taylor Wimpey, is having difficulties raising the necessary finance. As a result, there will need to be a quick review of the project and of the timing of fundamental phases of the building work.”

The agenda of the Committee meeting reveals indeed that there is a major item dedicated to the estate regeneration scheme (paper No. 21-46). Continue reading

The full case against Winstanley & York Rd scheme: social cleansing and contempt for local residents

Author: Cyril Richert

The Clapham Junction Action Group has sent a contribution building the case against the Winstanley and York Road regeneration plans push forward by Wandsworth Council. In this (long) article, we not only present the full arguments developed in the report, but we also deal with the enormous money pocketed by the Council with this development and the apathy and lack of ambition of the local Labour party.

We support the principle of regenerating the Winstanley and York Road Estates. The estates have been neglected by the local authorities and in the recent decade the area has been rightly labelled “one of the most deprived estates in the borough”.

However, we consider that the consultations have been conducted as a meaningless statutory obligation, that legitimate local resident concerns were systematically dismissed or simply ignored, and that the whole scheme has been conducted by Wandsworth Council with a partisan political agenda in mind. Allowing such plan would contribute to deteriorate further the already poor level of trust expressed by communities towards local government.

Green light from Sadiq Khan

The phased demolition of most of the existing buildings of Winstanley and York Road estates, being replaced by a huge development, providing 2550 residential units in blocks ranging from three to 32 storeys, has been given a green light by the Mayor of London.

In March 2019, the Mayor of London delegated the decision on the first review of the Council’s scheme for Winstanley and York Road estates. The first report (stage 1) supported the overall design strategy but required more scrutiny on the provision of housing. It also recommended that the Council updates its policy to protect the new open space created (2.49 hectares, a loss of locally designated open space compared to existing) to ensure that it benefits from appropriate policy protection in the future.

In a second report (stage 2) on 23 November 2020, Sadiq Khan himself ratified the formal approval from City Hall.

Undercover “social cleansing” organised by Wandsworth Council

Continue reading

Clapham Junction through History

Author: Cyril Richert

The latest Council’s Press Release has got a very interesting article about Clapham Junction History with a series of old photos that we will display here (hopefully there is no copyright infringement).

The article starts in 1856, when three railway companies who each had trains running through the area got together to build a station at the junction of several lines. Continue reading

Major improvement at dangerous junction on Lavender Hill

Author: Cyril Richert

Existing segregated cycle lane on Lavender Hill

Following the tragic death of a cyclist more than four years ago, Transport for London is (eventually!) making some changes to the junction of Lavender Hill and Elspeth Road/Latchmere Road, in order to improve safety and reduce danger for cyclists.

In November 2020, local residents and businesses  received a letter providing  details of how this busy junction will be reconfigured. A number of changes are highlighted in the letter: Continue reading

Good news: Hazel Court scheme refused despite recommendation for approval

Author: Cyril Richert

Hazel Court – Proposed development

The demolition of an existing one storey building at the back of the St Johns Hill’s Therapy Centre and the erection of a part 2 and 6 storey building comprising 159 co-living rooms has been refused by the Wandsworth Planning committee for the second time, despite officer’s recommendation on both applications. The developer is now appealing the decision.

A very similar proposal was presented before the committee in 2017 and was refused on the ground of massing and scale. The developer has come back with an even larger proposal this time (6 storeys instead of 5, 159 studio flats in co-living/equivalent of 88 dwellings, instead of 57 residential units). Continue reading

Controversial plan approved in Parma Crescent, despite blatant breach of policies

Author: Cyril Richert

This may be the end of the story for a controversial proposal in Parma Crescent. After a third series of modifications and a new application, the scheme was approved.

Back in July, we reported on a the second attempt of a proposal to replace an unusually small house which had an unusually large garden on Parma Crescent with a rather larger building housing five flats. The planning application 2020/0906 was later withdrawn and replaced by a new application, 2020/3505. Continue reading

Arding & Hobbs redevelopment proposal approved

Author: Cyril Richert

Proposal (p.a. 2020/3421) made by W.RE (W. Real Estate limited), to redevelop Arding & Hobbs building at Clapham Junction, has been approved by Wandsworth Council.

As usual, concerns of main objectors are blatantly ignored!

We reported previously about the proposal in several articles (here and there). We’ve been critical of the project, mainly due to two considerations: Continue reading

Wetherspoon is replacing Revolution at the Junction

Author: Cyril Richert

New Wetherspoon at the Junction

JD Wetherspoon has acquired the former Revolution site in the heart of Clapham Junction.

JD Wetherspoon has taken over the former Revolution cocktail bar at the junction of Lavender Hill and Falcon Road, within a stone’s throw of the Clapham Junction Station. The new pub, called The London and South Western (named after the railway), had just opened on Friday 4th… to close a week later as London was going into full lockdown again (and Christmas was cancelled!). Continue reading

Peabody agrees on compensation for residents around site construction in Clapham Junction

Author: Cyril Richert

Current work on site – September 2020

After more than 6 months of complaints from local residents, Peabody have announced that they were prepared to offer an independent building survey undertaken by a building surveyor and structural engineer for the residents of Comyn Road and Eckstein Road, whose properties have been damaged by their ongoing construction site.

At the same time, Sisk, their construction site company, has instructed a report from acoustic consultants to suggest other methods that could be used to keep noise to a minimum. Continue reading