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 The Sanderstead Blog
 
Cllr  Lynne  Hale
Cllr  Yvette  Hopley
Cllr  Tim  Pollard
 

Intensification zones at local plan hearing
23/05/2017 10:40:00......Posted by Tim Pollard

Yesterday an entire day of the Inspection in Public of the local plan for Croydon was devoted to the subject of intensification zones. These are zones where our Labour council is particularly keen to see developed more intensively, in particular with more blocks of flats and heights allowed to double – so a predominately 1 or 2 storey area will be allowed to go to four storeys.

It has never been clear how the Labour administration arrived at the five sites it particularly wants to intensify. During the course of the inspection yesterday a new spreadsheet was circulated which apparently summarises which areas were considered and why the five selected ones were chosen. Unfortunately this document poses more questions than it answers!

What is clear is that 35 areas were considered, of which 16 were in the south and east of the borough – and therefore are represented by Conservative councillors – and 19 were in the northern and central areas currently represented by Labour. All five selected zones are in the south and east.

The areas concerned are:

  • An area along Limpsfield Road, Sanderstead, extending eastwards into Onslow Gardens and other residential roads
  • An area extending up the hills behind Kenley Station
  • An area around Wickham Road, Shirley Road and Addiscombe Road, again extending outwards into quiet residential roads
  • An area in South Croydon extending down Brighton Road from opposite Whitgift School, past the bus station and down to the junction of Sanderstead Road. It also runs up Sanderstead Road to Sanderstead Station and again takes in many roads to either side of the main roads
  • An area of Forestdale from Inglewood through Woodpecker Mount and Bellfield, down to Featherbed Lane and then up Gravel Hill.

My concern is that all these zones are too large, somewhat arbitrary in what they take in and what they don’t and the reasoning behind their selection very difficult to match up against the so-called ‘evidence’ which underpins it.

Some sites are rejected because the ownership of the land is fragmented and therefore the prospects for concerted development are very limited. Others are ruled out because of nearby heritage assets. Yet Onslow Gardens, which the supporting spreadsheet accepts contains All Saints Church (nationally listed) and eight other locally listed assets, with all the land owned in small house-sized plots. Surely when compared with other rejected areas, Onslow Gardens is equally challenging to intensify?

The plan regarding Sanderstead’s intensification is also contradictory. Elsewhere in the plan the council notes that the view of All Saints’ from Limpsfield Road is important and worthy of protection. That’s good, but given that it also wishes to allow four storey blocks of flats to be built surrounding All Saints’ and directly along the line of the view it wants to protect, that’s not very reassuring!

The over-arching policy talks about the idea that these zones should be in areas with good public transport. The council spreadsheet accepts that the PTAL (public transport accessibility level) in Sanderstead is virtually at the lowest level, far from the high level the policy requires!

This area is not called Sanderstead Village for nothing. It is centred around a church, a green and a village pond. The council recognises that the aspect to the west is very open and should be protected. The existing buildings in this intensification zone are predominately semis, detached two storey or bungalows. To all intents and purposes it is a village dropped into to a continuous urban environment. Turning it into flats seems nothing short of vandalism.

The good news is that it is clear that the Inspector is acutely aware that the selection of the five zones is arbitrary at best and the evidence base provided is contradictory. Towards the end of the day he noted that there were a number of possible outcomes of this part of the plan – he could redraw the boundaries, or delete entire zones, or even delete the entire policy from the plan. He could also, of course, approve the zones (although my reading of the progress of the day is that this is not the most likely outcome).

Moving on to the other proposed zones, the Kenley zone is equally bonkers. It does not need a policy to encourage intensification. Existing policies and the topography can be used to allow sustainable intensification as and where it is appropriate.

The Forestdale zone is quite simply crazy. The area identified is already quite intensively developed – mostly in the form of three storey six-flat apartment blocks. It is all in private ownership, with the flats subject to leases. The prospects of doing anything much in that zone are almost nil. Half of Holmbury Grove is in and half is out. You really wonder how officers and Labour councillors ever believed it was sensible to put this one forward.

The Wickham Road/Shirley Road zone is not entirely crazy, being based on a core area which is already semi-intensified. However, the zone extends too far into the main road hinterlands, and un-necessarily extends up Shirley Road and Addiscombe Road.

Similarly the Brighton Road plan makes a certain amount of sense in its application to Brighton Road, but there is no rational reason to include Sanderstead Road and it is hard to understand why this particular stretch of Brighton Road is considered more suitable that the miles of the rest of it or London Road? It seems to have just been pulled out of a hat!

The Inspector has run the sessions very fairly, and all the evidence has been examined quite forensically. I hope that the outcome of this will be a deletion or significant modification to this harmful and divisive policy.

 

 
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The council needs to start again with its Local Plan update
19/01/2020 08:39:00.......Posted by Tim Pollard

Monday 20 January is the revised date for submissions of comments on the council's Local Plan, Partial Review. As has been widely publicised by Residents' Associations and Friends Groups, the revisions to the plan proposed will have wide ranging consequences in our suburbs, and particularly on the loss of more Green Belt (to add to that land the Labour Council freed up for development in 2018). If residents want to protect their area from further damage, now is the time they must stand up for their local area, working with Conservative councillors.

I have made my submission to the consultation today, covering both borough-wide and issues more narrowly relating to Sanderstead ward.

The full text of my submission can be found here.

You can view the documentation the council has produced here.

You can let the council know your views using the online tools on their documentation page or simply by emailing LDF@croydon.gov.uk

 

 


 

Possible school 'school street' zone around Ridgeway School
10/01/2020 14:42:00.......Posted by Tim Pollard

The council has announced that it is considering extending its 'school street' scheme to include Southcote Road, where it fronts Ridgeway Primary. Under this scheme the street is closed to vehicular traffic in the morning and afternoon drop-off/collection times during term time. It is writing to members of the public living in the immediate area to consult them on their views (I have attached a copy of the letter below). If live in the affected area and have a view, it is important that you fill in and return the consultation form.

So what is a 'school street'? In present context, it is a street with a school entrance, which is restricted to use by pedestrians and cyclists, with most motor vehicle traffic prohibited, between the hours of 08:00 to 09:30 and 14:00 to 16:00 on weekdays. In accordance with the Highway Code for the School Street signs, the restriction applies to the act of driving into the road during the stated hours. Vehicles arriving outside these hours will be permitted to remain parked in the road and can drive out of the road at any time. In practice, the restrictions are not enforced during school holidays. Exempted vehicles can drive in the road at all times.

What if I need to drive my car in the street during the restricted hours? Motor vehicles belonging to the following groups of drivers are eligible for an exemption permit, to enable them driving into the School Street during the hours of operation:

  • Occupier within the zone, with a registered vehicle or a hire, company or courtesy car agreement.
  • Vehicles used in the transport of children and adults with special access needs, including private vehicles, taxies and minicabs declared for such use.
  • Business and school employees with allocated parking on their premises inside the zone.
  • Essential health and care visitors, including relatives of residents with care needs.
  • All day commercial operators, such as builders, decorators and heavy goods suppliers, are eligible for a temporary permit covering the duration of their necessary activities.

The exemption permit is simply an electronic record in the compliance system and there is no need to physically affix anything to a vehicle.

Motor vehicles belonging to the following groups and situations are automatically permitted to drive in a School Street, without first obtaining an exemption permit:

  • Emergency services.
  • Statutory public services, such as gas/electricity companies and refuse collectors.
  • Universal postal service providers, such as the Royal Mail.
  • Breakdown and recovery vehicles (the so called 4th emergency service).
  • Exemptions stated in the Highway Code, such as at the direction of a police officer.

What about our visitors?

Other drivers who wish to access the School Street must arrive outside the hours of operation, or they can temporarily park outside the zone and then move the vehicle once the restrictions end. The vehicles that are not eligible for a permit notably include those of:

  • General visitors to residents and businesses. 
  • Home deliveries.
  • Business and school employees without access to on-premises parking (the scheme is not intended to free up the road to substitute for workplace parking). It is pragmatically accepted that on-site parking facilities may occasionally create an over-spill into the public road.

How much will an exemption permit cost? The permit is free (£0.00) and requested by email to schoolparking@croydon.gov.uk.

How can it be ensured that motorists driving in the School Street zone are entitled?

A traffic camera with automatic number plate recognition (ANPR) and a contravention detection algorithm will operate during the controlled hours. To prevent false triggers and to permit a driver correcting a turning mistake, the alleged contravention trigger point is a small distance into the road. The Penalty Charge Notice is £130 (discounted to £65 if paid within 14 days) and issued to the registered keeper of a vehicle. This penalty charge is set by a London-wide authority, to reflect a level deemed necessary in deterring driving contraventions. Drivers have the right to appeal any penalty, stating a legally valid reason for driving in the School Street.

To fairly enable drivers realising the changing conditions in the street and to give them the opportunity to find another mode or route of travel, the scheme would not be enforced during its first month of operation. Parking enforcement officers would show heightened presence in the surrounding area.

The full consultation letter can be read here.

 


 

Riddlesdown Station and Flats
20/12/2019 12:08:00.......Posted by Yvette Hopley

 
 

I thought it worth posting the picture of Riddlesdown Station and the newly built flats.  As you can see the water level is considerably high with commuters having to take their shoes and socks off to tread through deep water to get to the station.

This used to be in the Sanderstead ward and  I think it is also worth noting the comments by the RRA in respect of the serious problem which remains unresolved and has only got worse since the construction of the flats.  As well as Riddlesdown residents many Sanderstead ward residents use or should I say try to use this station to get to and from work, shops, local hospitals, take children to school etc.

So what changed in 2013/2014? The new 10 flats called Riddleah Court were constructed in circa 2014. Previously when highway flooding occurred here, the surface water use to overflow into the woodland and drain away and the carriageway and footway were passable. When the planning application was submitted in 2010 I think, the RRA made strong representations to the Planning Dept about flooding as one of our objections (as well as the three current Sanderstead Cllrs also objecting) but the Planning Officer recommended granting approval. However the Planning Committee thought otherwise and refused the application. This was then overturned on appeal by the Planning Inspector after a Local Public Inquiry at which the RRA attended and made strong representations.  For clarity this location is now in the PO&R Ward.

The flats were constructed, land levels were raised and a boundary brick wall was constructed at the back of the footway. This now acts like a dam and water can no longer overflow into the woodland. In addition there is also run off onto the highway from the footways, driveway and car park of Riddleah Court despite SUDs being in place. The photos 3rd, 4th and 5th show flooding here, the deepest I've ever seen it on 24 August 2015.

So what have the Council done since? Yes, they have gully sucked and cleaned out the sumps and soakaways on a few occasions after flooding and installed a couple more gullies (which I believe drain into the existing soakaway). But it is not working and flooding is getting much deeper and more often since 2014.

Drastic measures should be taken to address this issue.  Sadly the council don't seem to take into account representations in respect of flooding in their quest to build flats regardless of the impact.

 

 

 


 

Development on the Corner of West Hill and Sanderstead Hill
19/12/2019 17:16:00.......Posted by Yvette Hopley

 
 

It is extremely disappointing to see that after conditions were applied to ensure mature trees replaced those hacked down during the demolition of the house on the corner of West Hill and Sanderstead Road pencil thin planting has been considered suitable by the developer.  I was assured that mature trees would be planted to form the natural arbour over Sanderstead Road.  Officers at the council are going to investigate what has gone wrong and how the matter can be rectified.  The current planting scheme which include holly branches and other stick thin whips is not acceptable.

 


 

Disposing of Christmas trees post Xmas
13/12/2019 16:35:00.......Posted by Tim Pollard

It may seem a bit early to be talking of how to dispose of your shiny new Christmas tree, but the council has just published detals of its January tree disposal programme.

Real trees will be collected and recycled between Monday 13 January and Monday 27 January 2020 inclusive.

Trees should be placed as close as possible to the front boundary of residents’ properties on Monday 13 January. It must be visible from the kerbsidewithout blocking access or the pavement.

Decorations must be removed from the trees, which should also be taken out of any pots.

Residents should note, their tree will probably not be collected on the same day as normal recycling and refuse collections.

Alternatively, residents subscribed to the council’s garden waste collection service can cut up their tree and put it in their bin and it will be collected as part of the normal garden waste collection.

Residents in properties with communal bins should leave trees outside the bin store but make sure they do not block access. Flats above shops and other homes with no frontage should put trees out on normal collection days.

If your real tree is missed during this two-week period you can:

  • Take it to the Household Reuse and Recycling Centre at Factory Lane, Fishers Farm or Purley Oaks. Trees must not be left outside the recycling centre.
  • Put it out next to your rubbish bin on your next collection day, although your tree will not be recycled on the same day.
  • Cut it up and put it in your garden waste bin if you have a subscription.

 


 

St Edmund's Church - Riddlesdown
03/12/2019 09:48:00.......Posted by Yvette Hopley

                                                                                                  

STATEMENT TO LOCAL COUNCILLORS AND RIDDLESDOWN RESIDENTS’ ASSOCIATION ON THE FUTURE OF ST EDMUND’S CHURCH                                                                           

The Community of St Edmund’s has concluded, with much sadness, that continuing as an independent worshipping congregation within the parish of Sanderstead is no longer viable and that a new future must be found for the building. Regular Sunday worship will cease at Christmas.

But St Edmund’s is NOT CLOSING. Christian worship and other activities will continue, the former in a different form to be determined as soon as possible.

The buildings will continue to be available for community use, as now. Contacts and administrative arrangements will change but otherwise things will remain unchanged. Indeed, we are hoping for an enhanced community role, as well as the continuing religious one, for St Edmund’s following the refurbishment of the William Goddard Room, generously financed by our local councillors.

We are holding a celebration of the past – and future – life of St Edmund’s on Sunday 16th February, to which all in the community will be welcome. Details will follow but, if you would like to come, you may wish to make a note in your diary.

Richard Wragg

Chris Babbs

Churchwardens

 


 

Cherry Trees and Litter Pick - Cherry Tree Green
30/11/2019 11:55:00.......Posted by Yvette Hopley

 
 

It was great to see the newly planted cherry trees on Cherry Tree Green.  Local residents led by Marianne Daniels from the newly formed Friends of Green Spaces organised a litter pick and was joined by membrs of the Sanderstead Residents Association, Mandy Ashton from Priscillas, local scout leader Janice and local councillors to ensure the green and area looked ship-shape.  I can't wait to see them in the spring.

 


 

Fire - 3 West Hill - New Flats
27/11/2019 10:00:00.......Posted by Yvette Hopley

 
 

A fire broke out this morning at the site of 3 West Hill, the new development on the corner of Sanderstead Road.  The fire started in the basement of the building and a crew from four fire engines quickly extinguished the fire.  The cause of the fire is being investigated.  I am pleased that no one was hurt.

 


 

Cherry Trees for Cherry Tree Green
25/11/2019 15:41:00.......Posted by Yvette Hopley

 
 

Sanderstead is marking a week-long national celebration of trees by planting 20 new cherry trees. Ten new trees have been planted on Cherry Tree Green in Hamsey Green, as part of an initiative to plant 3,500 trees in the borough by 2023, and a further ten are set to be planted in coming weeks.

The site was suggested by local resident Marianne Daniels, who is part of the new Friends of Green Spaces Group.  She has been working with me and council officers on a number of initiatives in the locality.

They were planted just ahead of National Tree Week which sees a nationwide campaign to plant 1,000,000 trees.

Marianne said: “I am really delighted Croydon Council has supported my request to plant trees on Cherry Tree Green. The four different colours of cherry trees will be a welcome splash of colour.

“We will be holding a community litter pick on Saturday 30 November at 10.30am in order to tidy up the green followed by an informal photo at 11am. Litter picking equipment will be provided.

Do come and join the litter pick and see the newly planted trees on the green.  Whilst the rain may not be ideal weather for a litter pick the trees will certainly enjoy it!

 


 

Christmas Light Switch On - The Gruffy - Saturday, 30 November 2019 - 4.30 pm
22/11/2019 15:21:00.......Posted by Yvette Hopley

 
 

The Xmas Lights Switch On will take place on Saturday, 30 November 2019 at 4.30 pm on The Gruffy around the Xmas Tree.  The star and the tree will be the first to be lit with the rest of the lights in the high street following.  It is hoped that santa, even though extremely busy, will be able to do this alongside All Saints Church choir who will be singing carols around the tree.  It is the start of the festive season and we wish everyone a Merry Xmas.  The Sanderstead councillors have funded the lights and switch on from their community budget.

 


 

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 Older Blog Posts
13/11/2019
Solar Powered Bollard - Court Hill/Brian Avenue
05/11/2019
SES Water - Poor Road Repairs - Mitchley Avenue
31/10/2019
Berlin Wall - Fronting Sanderstead Road - Corner of West Hill
25/10/2019
Cherry Tree Green - Hamsey Green Pond
23/10/2019
Raw Sewage - Back of Sanderstead Court Avenue
17/10/2019
Dementia Friendly Film Screenings at David Lean Cinema
17/10/2019
New Posts and Repairs to Railings - Sanderstead Shops
17/10/2019
Churchgate - 1 Addington Road - Consultation
29/09/2019
Possible care home opposite All Saints
25/09/2019
Cressey College - Special School (5-19) Off Orchard Road
25/09/2019
West Hill Development Site - Disruption
25/09/2019
Scam callers pretending to be Thomas Cook liquidators
06/09/2019
Temporary closure of street as a 'Play street'
03/09/2019
Bridge works on Sanderstead Road requiring road closure
09/08/2019
Sanderstead Road - Public Footpath 142 - Adjoining Purley Oaks Road
07/08/2019
Resurfacing on Rectory Park
06/08/2019
Mitchley Avenue Bench
01/08/2019
Hamsey Green Pond - Work by the Downland Volunteers
31/07/2019
Hamsey Green Pond -1914
30/07/2019
BARROWSFIELD - Planning Committee this Thursday - 1st August
24/07/2019
Sanderstead Road closure at West Hill junction 403 bus diverted
22/07/2019
Ashdown Gardens - Hamsey Green Sanderstead
18/07/2019
Act quickly to protect your local green spaces
18/07/2019
Barrowsfield planning application deadline tomorrow
03/07/2019
Amendments to Barrowsfield proposal received
03/07/2019
Third consecutive missed green waste collections
27/06/2019
Grass Cutting of Sanderstead Hill
27/06/2019
Sanderstead Horticultural Society - Summer Show
27/06/2019
Fallen Tree Across Mitchley Hill and Limpsfield Road
14/06/2019
Potholes in Sanderstead
 
 
 
 
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