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We have heard nothing recently about Chinese developer ZhongRong’s proposed development for some months but two articles in recent issues of Private Eye suggest that the scheme is not yet dead and that negotiations around exclusivity agreements are still ongoing.
At the same time the GLA has hired sports advisory firm CSM (run by Lord Coe) to prepare alternative redevelopment schemes for the existing sports centre and stadium. All the options show the sports centre being retained and refurbished (yet again) but the stadium is to be demolished and the site used for a school. Understandably athletes and local residents are less than impressed and there have been a raft of objections.
The London Assembly has called on London City Airport to re-consult on its plans to concentrate its flight paths. The LCA is planning to concentrate its flights paths in and out of the airport but has refused to leaflet or hold public meetings in the areas affected, it has simply put technical information on its website. Dulwich is amongst the areas that will be affected.
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Wednesday 24 September: The annual Tree Group visit is to Kew Gardens. Meet at Kew at the Victoria Gate. We will have a Group Ticket for entry, the use of the 'Hop on/hop off' Explorer Train during the day, and a specialised Guide for about an hour, with particular attention to their ZELKOVAS.
This will be a small group and the cost will be £17.50.
Entry tickets and information will be posted in advance
0208 693 6313
Or write to 18 College gardens, London SE21 7BE
Work is now underway as of 10th September. Completion hopefully will be by the end of the week.
The pub will close for refurbishment on 21 September and will remain closed for 15 months.
The planning application was submitted to Southwark on 26 August. It has now been registered under ref: 14/AP/3104 and comments or objections should be sent in to Southwark by 12 October.
Thursday 23 October - Lost Effra Talk ‘London’s Lost Rivers’: Tom Bolton, a researcher and writer, and the author of London’s Lost Rivers: A Walker’s Guide: will give a talk at the Belair Park Community Centre on Gallery Road. He will talk about London’s lost rivers, especially the Effra, and, among other things, he will reveal Brixton’s forgotten rural past, find out why the Oval is oval and visit the oldest inhabited spot in London.
Sunday 14 September – Dulwich Vegetable Garden open day at Rosebery Lodge in Dulwich Park. 12-4pm. Tea & home-made cakes, fun for children, competitions, demonstrations etc.
Sunday 14 September – ‘St Saviour’s via Sunray’ - a Lambeth Heritage Festival walk via the Sunray Estate to St Saviour’s Parish Hall, which celebrated its centenary this year. Meet at 2:30pm at the ‘red post’ at the top of Red Post Hill (junction Denmark Hill/Herne Hill).
Saturday 20 & Sunday 21 September – Open House: The Crystal Palace subway will be open again this year – for the ticket ballot email
Sunday 20 September – ‘Love West Dulwich’: many businesses will be running unique events, and promos throughout the day (10.00am–6.00pm). The launch will end with an evening soiree, with live jazz band and a barbeque at the Alleyn Park Garden Centre (6.00pm – 9.00pm)
It was confirmed at the Dulwich Community Council on 21 July that the proposed remedial work to the railway bridges just south of Herne Hill Station, due to start on 28 July, had now been postponed. Transport for London had raised late objections about the potential impact on bus routes and emergency services. Network Rail will carry out additional traffic modelling exercises and further consultation with local amenity groups before any decision on a revised date is made. Logic suggests that it should be next summer to minimise the effect on local traffic, but we must wait and see.
Football has been played at Dulwich Hamlet since 1893 - the club is in the Isthmian League, but the number of supporters has been falling in recent years and the present stadium, with its three floors in the main stand, has long been a massive financial drain. The current owners have begun a public consultation process to build a new football ground on Greendale (the first presentation was on 19 July), the open area to the west of the stadium which is currently designated as Metropolitan Open Land. The club has a lease for Greendale from Southwark Council until 2015.
The club moved into the present stadium in 1992, following the demolition of the old Champion Hill Stadium – now the site of the Sainsbury’s supermarket. As part of that development a Section 106 Agreement was signed between Southwark Council, J Sainsbury and Kings College London (the then freeholders) to restrict use of the club site to recreational, leisure or educational purposes.
In 2008 Kings’ College, the long standing freeholders, sold the freehold to DHPD Ltd (a property company). In 2010 they made a planning application for 60 flats on the car park (ref 11-AP-2250). The scheme was withdrawn in November 2010 probably because the Council said there was no chance of an approval. A further scheme was submitted in 2011 (ref 11-AP-2280). It was rejected in February 2012 on the grounds that building on Metropolitan Open Land would contravene council policies.
In May 2012, DHPD Ltd. went into administration. The freehold was bought by Hadley Property Group in February 2014 and, shortly afterwards, Hadley took day to control of the club and paid off a significant number of the club’s debts. The firm has made no secret that it is looking to redevelop some or all of the current ground, with the club being moved to more appropriate facilities nearby.
In summary then, there have been two relatively recent planning applications to develop the existing stadium site and move the football ground onto Greendale and they have all been turned down as contravening the Council’s policy on development on MOL. None have been tested at appeal.
Is there anything different about the current proposal other than the implied threat that is the scheme does not go ahead the club will close? The answer is no and, while residents might regret the loss of the football club, the consequences for the surrounding area for allowing development on MOL are very serious. We cannot allow a precedent to be set. The Council needs to stand by its policies and, in fairness, up till now it has done so, and Peter John, the leader of the Council is recently on record as saying that there will be no development on Greendale because it is MOL. Hadley should go elsewhere.
The start date for this work has now been put back to 3 September. No reason has been given for the delay.