Winstanley Estate Regeneration in parliament

Author: Cyril Richert


House of Commons – Friday 22 March 2019
Marsha De Cordova MP (Battersea, Labour)

Marsha de Cordova, MP for Battersea, secured a debate on Winstanley Estate Regeneration on March, 22nd (Citation: HC Deb, 22 March 2019, c1433).

There are interesting comments, mostly about the lack of social units in the scheme (currently council houses representing the majority of homes on the estate, while of the proposed 2,000 extra homes, just three will be council homes), while Wandsworth Council has nearly 7,000 families on its housing waiting list, and that the Council is accused of promoting “social engineering” within the Winstanley and York Road estates. We also learn that last year, 90% of the houses built in the borough were unaffordable private homes, while less than 3% were council homes.

Unfortunately Rishi Sunak, Under-Secretary for Housing, Communities and Local Government, refused to comment on the case and instead made a general statement about the government priority to build more affordable homes (missing the point raised about specifically social housing – not 80% of private market rent or shared-equity schemes) and praising the Tory leadership of Wandsworth.

You will find below a full transcript of the debate, with some specific parts highlighted when we found it appropriate (video is available HERE). Continue reading

Ganley Court: strong objection from residents to developments of up to 31 storey towers

Authors: Owners and residents of No. 17, 18, 20, 23, 40, 42, 43 and 44 Ganley Court

Latest plans for skyscrapers on York Gardens

NB: This is a transcript of the detailed objection of Ganley Court residents regarding the Planning Application 2019/0024, which is proposing to build on York Garden up to 2550 residential units ranging from 3 – 31 storeys above ground level including leisure centre, health, flexible commercial uses, park, landscaping, public realm, energy centres, car/cycle parking and new vehicle accesses.

We are the owners and residents of No. 17, 18, 20, 23, 40, 42, 43 and 44 Ganley Court, Winstanley Estate, SW11 2EW. We are all freeholders of well-maintained low rise terraced family-sized houses of three and four bedrooms with garden. We believe that the changes being proposed are substantial and that, despite our feelings about the Master Plan having been made clear from the beginning, the rights and needs of the freehold residents of Ganley Court have been neglected and undermined throughout the consultation process. We therefore request further consultation and a revised planning application before this is determined. Continue reading

Horror plans to redevelop Clapham Junction/Winstanley area

Author: Cyril Richert

An article from the Evening Standard a few days ago revealed to the general public some pictures of the plans instigated by Wandsworth Council to redevelop Winstanley & York estates. We have already explained in many articles how Wandsworth Council ignored some results of the consultation 5 years ago and has conducted parody of consultations along the process. For a reminder, you can just glance at our previous article: Winstanley regeneration: Can we trust the Council?

There is not much to add to the pictures published in the Evening Standard and that we post below. It resembles more Canary Wharf or even New York in some extend and as “phallocratic” tower-plans go (as Boris Johnson famously named them in 2007) the budget for this “grand” design slipped from £1bn in 2017 to £1.4bn nowadays. Who knows, it might soon reached £2bn if you had 2 or 3 more skyscrapers… And to reuse a headline describing the former Mayor of London, it could be Tory’s dire legacy for Clapham Junction. Continue reading

Winstanley Phase 0: Less Trees, Less Space and High rise

Author: Cyril Richert

Phase 0 of the Winstanley and York Road estates regeneration has now started. Usual trick applied: the picture published is only showing the top 6 floors of a tower that will reach … 20 floors.

This phase comprises of three separate developments along Grant Road, which in total will deliver 139 new residential flats along with the relocation of the Battersea Baptist Church and Thames Christian College. Continue reading

Councils play damaging property game: short-term gain but long-term threat to London

Authors: Cyril Richert & Jane Clifton

Capture from BBC 1 Inside Out documentary

On Tuesday 3rd September, BBC1 released a very interesting documentary on Council regeneration plans (BBC1 Inside Out 03/09/2018). The programme featured Westminster’s “regeneration” programme (this city council plans to flatten 300 homes at the Ebury Bridge estate in Pimlico to make way for 750 new properties, the majority of which will be sold on the private market) but it also dealt with the issue more widely – the property development activities of various other London Councils.

The 29-minute documentary clearly shows why getting rid of council housing in favour of expensive redevelopments and making financial gains for the Councils (and more obviously private developers) is such bad news long term for London: pushing out vital elements of the population who help to keep the city running.
Continue reading

Winstanley regeneration: Can we trust the Council?

Author: Cyril Richert

Following the initial consultation in 2013, the Council has presented several exhibitions (so-called “consultations”) of what Ravi Govindia calls now “the vision created with the help of the local residents“.

As the leader of the Council might reveal soon the 50+ storey landmark that he is planning for the area (nicknamed Govindia Wharf) this is interesting to see the difference between what local residents responded to and the current presentations.

Board presenting the result of the consultation in 2013

Evolution of the size of the leisure centre proposal from 2013 to 2018

Evolution of the size of the Grant Road proposal from 2013 to 2018

Evolution of the size of the main Winstanley blocks proposal from 2013 to 2018

Do you think this is a definition of “taking into account the result of consultation“?

And by the way, this is Winstanley & York estates in 2018:

Winstanley & York Road estates in 2018

Winstanley regeneration: when the “consultation” becomes a farce

Author: Cyril Richert

Latest plans for skyscrapers on York Gardens

With the latest developments along York Road, we have now potentials for even taller buildings“, I was told at the Winstanley & York exhibition in November 2017 by the head of the project team.

New “landmark tower” (32 storeys) on York Garden

Indeed he was right: every new exhibition the building size increases by X% and their new proposal shows a 32 storey tower (as usual called “a landmark tower“), which is part of a block including also a 20 storey tower and a 17 storey tower! Continue reading

Council’s gift before local election: 20 storey tower beside Grant Road station entrance

Author: Cyril Richert

Finally, after 4 years of work on the Winstanley and York redevelopment project, and as local residents expressed the wish of less towers in the 2013 consultation, the Council is proposing a 20 storey tower in Grant Road, the tallest building in the area so far. Continue reading

Wandsworth Council is threatening to tear down homes of Ganley Court

Author: Dr Neil Mason

Ganley Court homeowners protesting at the latest Council’s exhibition for the Winstanley/York estates redevelopment

The Ganley Court homeowners on the Winstanley Estate are fighting the proposed plans to demolish their homes as part of a regeneration masterplan.

They support the wider regeneration of the estate but completely reject this masterplan in its current form. The residents feel the proposed demolition of their low rise family homes to facilitate the building of a neighbourhood of dense skyscrapers is simply unacceptable. They are dismayed and distraught at the horrendous offer to be rehoused in new tower blocks on a shared equity basis. 

This regeneration project is making a mockery of planning rules.  The plans are changing and misleading at every stage and the buildings are getting higher, e.g. the latest addition of housing on top of the community centre, library and leisure centre with several 20-25 towers along the park. Continue reading

Appalling exhibition on the future of the Winstanley/Clapham Junction Station area

Author: Cyril Richert

Did you support the two 42-storeys towers at Clapham Junction station in 2009? If so you will be very pleased that Wandsworth Council is now pushing for such avision, but with a more ambitious project transforming of the full area into a small Canary Wharf type development!

For others, you will wonder if you should cry or laugh, but you will certainly be flabbergasted by the vision presented by the Winstanley York Road regeneration team. Continue reading