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If you felt a bit underwhelmed by our Christmas lights…

…this is what neighbouring Penge managed.  We hope Station to Station and Lambeth will make a magnificent effort to help lift Christmas spirits for residents and shopkeepers alike, to follow a difficult year of water main replacement (see lead story below).

Dear neighbour,

Click on pix to enlarge (yes, it will work this month!)

Water main replacement will affect us all
Thurlow Park and Knight's Hill ward councillors called a public meeting at the Community Room in the library. It discussed the water mains replacement shortly to befall our shopping centre and importantly, generate ideas to mitigate the serious effects.  These works are expected to start about the end of March and probably continue till Christmas.  During this nine month period, Norwood Road will suffer partial closure to traffic, and at times possibly total closure.  Private vehicles may be excluded, and buses could be sent on major diversions.  For more details click
here.
 

Shops are bound to be hit hard, so Station to Station, Feast, NAG and Forum are meeting in mid-March to brain-storm promotion and support.  We’ll need real community spirit from all to boost our neighbourhood through a very difficult year.
 
B&Q site for sale, two planning applications in, major redevelopment to come
West Norwood shopping centre could be getting close to major redevelopment between Norwood Road and the York Hill Estate.  Currently, plans in public view are ‘piecemeal’, with separate current planning applications for the Brooks Laundry site (decision due Tuesday) and the land between the rear of Texaco and York Hill Estate (decision due 22nd March).  NAG, Forum and NPA have joined in objecting to these plans that do not meet the publicly consulted aspirations contained in Lambeth Local Plan 2015, and repeated in the draft 2020 plan.
 
As revealed in our January newsletter, the B&Q site has come on the market – offers over £10mill.  More
here.  This talks-up complete redevelopment with either B&Q beneath new multi-storey housing, moved within Site 18, or even lost.  Our local groups are united in resisting piecemeal development that will deliver few if any of the public benefits in the Local Plan.  Lambeth has not been effective in working to deliver its own redevelopment policy.
 
Meanwhile we authoritatively hear that a larger plan to embrace most of Site 18 (that is likely to supercede the current applications) is being developed.
 
81-89 Norwood High Street
NAG, Forum and NPA have put in this
joint comment to developer Artemis One regarding the proposed 7-storey building overwhelming its low-rise neighbours (reported in January newsletter).  No response, nor has a planning application yet been made.
 
Police helping NAG with its enquiries

Requests to Metropolitan Police to clean-up the shabby exterior of its disused premises at Tulse Hill have yet to produce an outcome.  Ironic if squatters should move in through the back door!
 

Broxholm and Glennie
Local social media has been buzzing at the possible introduction of a no-entry sign at the top of Broxholm.  Glennie residents aren’t so keen!  The idea is said to have been included in the recent Knight’s Hill ward Our Streets consultation.  You must get involved if you wish to influence!  Cllr Jane Pickard says that in any event it would be specifically consulted, and if favourable response it would also be trialled.  Suggestions for one-way working are unlikely to be adopted as Lambeth officers and TfL say that this leads to speeding traffic – oncoming traffic slows everything down.  That’s not doubted.
 
Foodbank…
latest news
 
Uffington Road criminal damage
Last newsletter request for information produced a result that has been passed to local police.  Meanwhile, on social media, concern was expressed that those responsible could have hurt themselves…
 
Shop crime…
Local shops are experiencing a high level of shoplifting, both covert and blatant.  This week in Sainsbury’s some young persons attacked security, staff and a shopper when they tried to prevent theft.  This trend is bad news for shops and shoppers alike.  Station to Station (the local Business Improvement District company) is also seeking initiatives.  If anyone has any identity information or other matters to report on any crime, contact local police, or via NAG at
info@norwoodactiongroup.org and we can pass-on anonymised, if required. 
 
Norwood Forum on gang violence and street crime
Our friends in Norwood Forum are pursuing local initiatives to try and achieve a turn-around.  NAG is eager to help.
 
Our Friends, Norwood Forum
Many ask: why two local groups?  Too much work for a single group, and we usually do different things, though often overlap.  Forum focuses on the community (slogan:
Connecting the Community), and NAG tends to focus on development and infrastructure (slogan: NAG, and get things done!).  We urge you to connect with Forum and receive its free newsletter too, which you can do via its excellent website
 
More LED advertising
Primesight won on appeal to the national Planning Inspectorate after refusal of planning consent from Lambeth for this distracting and large scrolling LED advertising display.  This replaces the poster that was there.  The location is adjacent to the location of the fatal collision with a pedestrian on the crossing in December 2017.
 
Dulwich Society Newsletter
…right
here.
 
Loss of parking on Norwood Road
Matters continue in the background, though current difficulties will be dwarfed by the water mains replacement (see lead story and link).  However, another longer term factor is the planned redevelopment of Waylett Place which will eliminate most if not all parking there (currently 17 spaces, plus 1 Blue Badge space).
 
Tulse Hill gyratory plans no longer funded
The plans to convert the gyratory to two-way working has been put on the backburner due to the TfL funding crisis.  Meanwhile, it could be that a simpler low-cost scheme might come forward.
 
Catalytic converters…
…another warning that they are still being stolen.  If you see suspicious activities beneath a vehicle, phone 999.  Also car break-ins - be alert and never leave valuables inside.
 
New Lambeth leader and council structure
Cllr Jack Hopkins succeeds Cllr Lib Peck.  More,
here and here.
 
Meanwhile…
…the new structure is due to Cllr Lib Peck being appointed head of Mayor Sadiq Khan’s Anti-Violence Unit.  More
here and here.  Whether Ms Peck will stand down as councillor for Thornton Ward isn’t known.
 
Knight’s Hill Day Nursery, Eden Road
Some may remember this delightful purpose built nursery school, now closed for more than ten years, largely derelict and squatted.  It was vested in a charity that became insolvent.  Since then the Lambeth legal team have been trying to resolve ownership.  Ten year on, still rolling.
 
Thurlow Park police, both long-term sick…
…now replacements.
 
Thurlow Park Safer Neighbourhood Team on duty…
…will be in attendance outside Tulse Hill Station on Tuesday and Wednesday from 5.30 to 7.30pm dispensing leaflets and advice.  If you support safer neighbourhoods, you too can join this volunteer team that has police support.  Have a chat with them.
 
Leisure Centre fifth anniversary, 28th July

…and we’re pleased to report that renovations are underway.  In the meantime, some thoughtless drivers are churning-up the verges.  Barrier expected to be in operation soon, overlooked by CCTV.
 

Those pesky ‘phone boxes’ – drug dealing hubs?
Instead of being digital communication hubs, more and more
evidence is coming forward of these being drug hubs, used for untraceable drug deal calls.  Police have now joined councils and communities in objecting to these unsightly pieces of street-junk clutter.  NAG and Forum have campaigned against every ‘phone box’ permitted-rights application with increasing success; however, the applicants sometimes win on appeal to the national Planning Inspectorate.  As reported in the last issue, Government is consulting on removing these PD rights as part Planning Reform.  Sooner the better, but other PD rights are proposed to be expanded…
 
The downside of Planning Reform, more Permitted Development
Our local MP Helen Hayes sent her endorsement and praise of NAG, Forum and NPA’s objections to the national consultation.  Many of the proposals to increase PD rights have received wide-spread condemnation.  An example is ‘air rights’ - building upwards without a full planning application.  This and many other proposed relaxations, and creation of new rights, could cause neighbourhoods to change without local control to beyond recognition, often to neighbour distress.  Local distinctiveness would often disappear under a welter of opportunistic development.  Our response to mind-boggling proposals
here.
 
Coming to Norwood High Street
Builders at both no. 8 and 92 (previously, Your Home Away from Home) say they are to be nail / beauty treatment establishments.
 
What’s On at South London Theatre…
find out!  Meanwhile NAG and Forum were very pleased to support SLT’s planning application to convert the old caretaker quarters to inexpensive workspace.  No interior or exterior alterations are necessary to this historic and characterful 1881 building.
 
Wonderful Faye at Fairisle’s Fix-It…
…tells us their offer is so much more!  If it involves fabric and sewing, they can do it, from new pockets and split seams to made-to-measure dresses and jackets to your drawing, or Faye will design.  More
here.
 
Birbeck Place didn’t do badly either!
With admiration, respect and appreciation to the Christmas Spirited residents.




Best wishes from the NAG editorial team
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