MINUTES OF MEETING
CANADA WATER CONSULTATIVE FORUM
4th February, 2002
VENUE: ALFRED SALTER SCHOOL
David Brunskill (DB) Lisa Hollamby (LH) Gary Glover (GG) Pauline Adenwalla (PA) Cllr Steve Lancashire (CSL) Cllr Derek Partridge (CDP) Stephen Platts SP) Pascale Rosenbloom (PR) Simon Hodge (SH) Danny McCarthy (DM) Ian Owers (IO) Dr Bob Muid (BM) Simon Hughes (SHMP) Brian Hodge* (BH) Jackie Rose (JR)
APOLOGIES: Cllr Columba Blango, Cllr Jeff Hook, Peter
Brooks, Alistair Macalpine, Rev. Andrew Doyle, Janet Hodge* (Brian
Conrad Hollingsworth has now left Bede.
(i) Downtown Brief: 2 Forum Members and 2 people nominated at the recall meeting to form
a sub-committee and to be directly involved in the short-listing of developers.
(ii) Education Paper: Education paper adopted.
(iii) Forum Elections: A newsletter should be sent to all residents explaining the work of the Forum and inviting those who wanted to be involved in the Forum to make contact and put their names forward for election.
ACTION POINTS: Vision Statement to be included in Development Brief SP
Diagram to be included following community feedback SP
Downtown Brief: Arrange a recall meeting (on site) SP
Arrange for final paragraph 3.1 to be taken out (reference to commercial development in particular) SP
Provide detailed explanation of the word mix; wherever used SP
Include provision for larger families SP
Arrange for local Health Authority representative to attend Forum (possibly produce topic paper on health issues) SP
Resolution reference (i) above to organise formation of small group to be involved with developer selection (2 Forum/2 Downtown) SP
Clarification of plannerspeak (ie active frontages, natural hierarchy of buildings and sense of place) SP
Green issues: Add to paper recommendations for green lanes to be established to facilitate wildlife movement DF
Make contact with group doing work on Green Lanes JR
Education: Add sentence on training currently available & future requirement PA
Add sentence specifically referring to larger family housing/key worker (teacher) accommodation PA
Reference to severe shortages (80 children currently not in education) PA
Resolution reference (ii) above to adopt Education Paper
Built Environment: Under car parking add Refer to Transport Paper. JH/NF
Transport: Add sentence referring to elderly, car parking, cycle ways, current public transport provision. DB
Return to Forum and view in conjunction with Built Environment DB
Enterprise: Sentence to be added referring to provision/feasibility of small local shop(s) to maximise income/activity. BH
Youth Paper: Ariela Cravitz (MV Co-ordinator at T&T) liaise with PR re contact with AC/PR
Young People to facilitate production of Youth Paper (JW/SHMP to assist)
Bacon CT facilities/resources to be made available to SH SHMP
Topic Papers (general): All papers to be reviewed and recapped at next Forum All con.
Forum Elections: Resolution reference (iii) above that a newsletter should be sent to all residents explaining the work of the Forum and inviting those who wanted to be involved in the Forum to make contact and put their names forward. Contact, venue, date, time and details to JR as soon as possible All con.
Urban Initiatives: Draft Brief to be circulated prior to next Forum meeting SP
1. Meeting opened by Chair 7.10pm
Meeting quorate DB welcomed all.
2. Minutes of last meeting:
Agreed unanimously with following correction motion to accept Topic Papers en bloc was adopted.
3. Matters Arising:
CSL asked when diagram will be available to accompany Development Brief. SP advised that he would be prepared to provide a diagram following feedback from community.
CDP referred to comment that ".. site is considered best suited to residential.." and he was concerned that Property Division (assuming they produced Brief) already have clear ideas what they want on site. Assurances were given at public meeting that there were no firm ideas except that the medical centre would remain and a reconstructed community centre. CDP asked to what extent this paper reflects consultation with the community? The Downtown Brief refers (on several occasions) to "..a mix of affordable and private housing " but it is not made clear that this will include properties for larger families. Although clearly stated in UDP HI5 (4) it appears to be commonly ignored.
Site D application recently approved does not comply with UDP. This site contains no provision for units suitable for larger families. CDP said developers felt more money could be gained from building units of smaller dimensions and any future developers are likely to act likewise. In CDPs opinion, the Development Control Committee should have acted to ensure that provisions of the UDP were met. In view of this CDP would like a phrase to be added to the Brief (wherever reference is made to type of units) " . including provision for larger families".
CDP said that given the distance of the Downtown site from Surrey Quays, adequate parking is essential. The council requirement under the UDP should reflect this.
DM wanted assurance that a recall meeting would be held and promises given at the first meeting honoured.
GG was concerned to ensure that the Brief should not allow development right up to the road and that grassy banks should be retained.
BH expressed concern about green areas being put into the sites that were being sold off and was concerned about the language being used, ie new urban quarter understood we had agreed waterside village. Talk of reducing car parking at the Health Centre was not feasible. Sick people cannot rely on public transport. The Health Centre is vital, the north of the Borough is already 12.5 GPs short.
DF was concerned that no reference had been made in the Downtown Brief to Surrey Docks Farm, The Pumphouse Educational , Lavender Pond there was a need to pull all green spaces together to make the resources important.
SP hoped there were some positive elements in the Brief which is a draft. It has not yet been circulated to anyone other than the Forum and it has not gone to the development market. He felt this area is residential and not suitable for anything else. He agreed the last paragraph of item 3.1 relating to development mix could come out. He intends to clarify usage of word mix. SP said there was no real differences in value between small and large homes. He would expect significant numbers of larger units and this could be made more explicit. The GLA wanted to restrict parking but the points made about distance from public transport and sick persons needs were noted.
Recall meeting: SP accepted the views expressed and will arrange to hold a meeting on site to get everyones views. He will take some comments away from tonights discussion and accepts more work will need to be done.
SP said that the lease has 115 years left. Nothing will happen to car parking. Details have been put in Brief to improve current health centre and it was thought an easier way for developers to talk to health authority directly. It is not in danger, it is only a change of landlord. DM asked if a person from NHS could be at the public meeting to hear views of community. SP said he understood need for extra GPs and he wanted Health Authorities and Developers to discuss this between themselves. He hoped he would be able to arrange for a representative to attend.
SP said that the green areas have been included in the development site because of the maintenance issue. It is currently very expensive for the Council to maintain and looking to reduce costs. Grassy banks etc would be passed on to landlords, giving them greater control. The height of the level (up to 20) would make it impossible to develop the grass verges.
GG and others suggested developers would find a way to fill in the land and raise levels.
SP consultation is still open. The final Brief will go out to public exhibition (3 proposals/3 developments) and the community will be invited to comment. That will go back to the Committee (LBS?) to decide on the proposal. He hoped some of the proposals for housing, car parking, etc would be exciting and it will eventually go to Cabinet Members for decision. Planning permission will also involve statutory consultation.
SP said it was not manageable to go out to public consultation (as in the terms of reference). He was prepared to look at the issue again to see what benefit there was. Council officers will be assessing proposals based on the Brief after it has been put out to consultation. They would expect 5-10 submissions.
BH said that council officers meeting behind closed doors is not open and transparent. IO felt that if local people had some involvement it would create a good practice and if not achieved in the early stages, it does cause suspicion. He too felt it would be beneficial to hold a recall meeting with the local community to allow them to have their say. GG suggested a small group be formed, say 2 from the forum and 2 from Downtown to work with LBS.
SP could not make a decision today. He hoped we would have confidence in his department to choose the best 3 proposals. There was also the issue of confidential and financial information being seen which must be kept secure. GG advised that TA are allowed to see confidential documents if they sign the appropriate forms of agreement not to reveal what they have seen. SP felt in practice confidential agreements do not stay that way.
Downtown Brief: 2 Forum Members and 2 people nominated at the recall meeting to form a sub-committee and to be directly involved in the short-listing of developers.
Proposed: GG Seconded: DM
For: 9, Against: Abstentions:
4. Action points arising from 4th February:
SP confirmed that he will include vision statement with papers to accompany final Brief.
5. Civic Trust Report:
here was extensive discussion on the Civic Trust Report but as it had only be tabled that evening, it was agreed that there would be detailed discussion at the next meeting.
6. Topic Papers
CDP said that the papers needs to acknowledge that a number of children in the area do not go to school. More family accommodation will actually mean more pupils and the teacher shortage has to be stemmed too. He felt a sentence referring to affordable family housing and housing for key workers should be added.
SHMP said it was worth recording what training facilities there are in this part of the Borough. The general impression is that a few years ago there were far more training firms/opportunities around the Tunnel area, could an investigation be made to see what the situation is. It would be helpful to know what apprenticeships and training schemes are available as well as workplace training
DB/PA pointed out that the Education Topic paper could/should/would evolve as time goes on and all the additional items were positive additions. It was agreed (i) add a comment on additional training in the area to para 2 and (ii) add affordable housing and key worker housing to para 3.
IO moved that Education paper be adopted.
CSL referred to the 4/5th bullet points Green Lanes for wildlife Green Lanes had been promoted northwest of the Borough and it would be a good idea to make contact. He hoped that we could promote this concept and CSL said he would go back to Green Lanes and mention this. PR confirmed that LBS were aware of environmental issues, particularly green roofs, green architecture etc.
SHMP said this would be helpful if we could have up to date information/a list of recognised green spaces in the area and their status. Some may technically be in private hands, ie schools, ecology gardens, allotments. We could have a stock take of what there is and a list of who is responsible and who looks after maintenance.
DF referred to the Mayors bio-diversity strategy and said she would endeavour to include these comments. She agreed that the area did cry out for a green audit and asked whether there was any possibility of employing someone to do an environmental survey, either LBS or the Mayors fund?
A paper was not required by the Forum as such and there was no faith representative to discuss the matter tonight.
PR said we have experienced difficulties in that no one has put their names down to help with a paper. Simon was the only person who had put his name forward and it was unfair to leave all the responsibility of the report on one person. SHMP suggested that Simon work in conjunction with Bacon School who may be able to offer support etc. Again, it would be helpful to outline exactly what sports provision we do have in the area such as Fisher, Red Lion, etc. IO point out that Ariela (MV Co-ordinator, T&T) was here for precisely that role. Her project is to work specifically with young people within the community on projects of their chose. IO was happy for the Time & Talents Centre to assist/support anyone wishing to work on the project in conjunction with AC and an added incentive would be the MV award. AC is tapping into the youth of the area. She stressed the importance of talking to the youngsters themselves.
DB suggested that AC liaise with SHMP to ensure that the project moved forward without unnecessary duplication of effort.
It was agreed by the meeting that AC will put together the focus paper on youth. She asked wanted to be absolutely clear that the Forum wanted the paper to come through herself and that she will obtain the voice of the youth.
GG asked what SHs opinion. SH said he does have the time and would be prepared to provide a report. He thought Bacons was a good idea and he was working on a process of getting the paper done. He already has some ideas about a questionnaire and he felt it would be a good idea to get help from Bacon. SHMP said he could have as many people as he needs from Bacon.
Built Environment Paper:
Generally people were pleased with the redraft.
The sentence " . uses ..including private, key worker and social.." should be amended to include private and social tenancies with provision for both larger families and key workers.
DB said that he was aware that there was still some "plannerspeak" in the Built Environment paper and SP undertook to re-examine wordings needing clarification.
Government are not against car ownership but it is trying to limit car usage. There is a need for people living in the area to be able to use the car for heavy shopping and many need it for light shopping too. This fact needs to be recognised, some people do need cars for local journeys to go about daily life.
There were various comments some of which were covered under the Transport topic paper. It was agreed that the Built Environment paper and the Transport paper be circulated together for the next meeting.
Topic Papers (generally)
PA requested clarification on which topic papers were still needed.
SP advised that there may be a case for including comment on health that could be attached to social inclusion. DB asked whether action on this process would be done before next meeting and PR will raise issue with the authority.
7. Forum Elections & AGM:
PR suggested sending a newsletter to the entire area explaining process/how forum works. Distribution agents have not worked as unreliable.
It was agreed that PR+JR would get something out so that everyone on the peninsula could participate. Dates, venue, time + process (ie how you see it working before they can move it forward and it needs agreement).
BH raised the issue of elections to the Youth Forum and said that lessons had been learned from last time (March 2001) and it needs to be well advertised and meetings held in each of the 3 areas. It may be difficult and expensive but it needs to be done.
DB pointed out that under the terms of reference agreed by the Forum there was a separate issue of whether it is acceptable to add someone to the Forum. SP felt the AGM would be the proper time to and place to debate issues of this nature. IO agreed that we do need to keep a constant check on the terms of reference but it doesnt stop the Forum from going ahead and making contact/discussing issues with under-represented groups.
BH felt that there should be 3 youth representatives. IO said that proper notice should be given to the community re terms of reference and he felt that black and ethnic groups should be invited. GG suggested doing a note to all relevant organisation that we are making a commitment to bring black and ethnic groups on board through Time & Talents.
PR pointed out the difficulties of youth representation. Attendance was difficult for 2 we have (only 1 attends) and she suggested that the youth reps could possibly rotate. Someone suggested contacting youth clubs BH said that not everyone goes to youth clubs and that youth should take responsibility. PR said it was hard to support youths and we have to find ways of encouraging them to attend. IO said that the matter should be debated and he was not ready to put people forward. He felt we were not equipped to do so but could we co-opt? We should look at how proposal can go forward which could become policy and will give others a chance to say something.
JW agreed she would support AC, SH and PR. She suggested coming up with proposals as to how we could involve young people. We need to provide the training for young people to work with adults. GG commented that most young people wouldnt sit here all night as it would be too boring! NA said young people may come along if there was something they found of interest.
A newsletter should be sent to all residents explaining the work of the Forum and inviting those who wanted to be involved in the Forum to make contact and put their names forward for election.
Motion: Carried unanimously
8. Update on Development Brief:
SP had written to DB to clarify separate work that UI had been asked to do. They have been given new instructions and he hopes to bring the draft brief back well in advance of the next Forum for comments etc. There will be plenty of time to consider it and take it to sub-groups before coming back with feedback. BH expressed surprise that consultants should be appointed before the Brief was circulated.
9. Planning permissions:
Permission agreed for residential development in the area of Decathlon sheds permission was agreed for live/work units and small commercial units.
This is commercial and applications will go before Planning Committee on March 5th.
City Academy (Paterson Park):
Approval was given at Planning Committee but has been referred to the Mayor of London. He may/mot not direct refusal and outcome is awaited.
10. Future Programme:
Next meeting: Monday, 11th March, 2002 @ 7.00pm Alfred Salter Primary School*
Canada Water AGM: Monday, 18th March, 2002 @ 7.00pm Alfred Salter Primary School
Forum AGM: Monday, 10th June, 2002 @ 7.00pm Alfred Salter Primary School
*CDP advised that Canada Water plans will come before the Planning Committee on 5/3 followed by the possibility of being heard on 11/3. It was agreed that if Canada Water plans are scheduled to go before the Committee on 11/3 the Forum will be cancelled.
11. Terms of Reference:
CDP was concerned that the Forum was becoming a farce. He felt that stakeholders interested in the area and working on the masterplan have a vested interest. In his opinion those representing Sites D, E and Decathlon have effectively opted out of the work of the Forum and were sabotaging progress.
There were good grounds why planning permission for Site D should have been refused but he felt developers took advantage of the disarray in planning division and the Development Control Committee to get their own proposals through. He felt those who call themselves stakeholders should reconsider their position and also whether they should properly come and sit with us take part in the work of the forum. They do not appear to be furthering the interests of the masterplan, or the forum just their own.
NA said that Sites D & E (not only Canada Street and Surrey Quays) were isolated. Site E was residential and Site D is commercial and applications have been proceeded. Site D is no longer his site. Site C is fundamental to plan and that is why he is here.
BH expressed surprise that the current UDP had not been implemented and supported. There is conflict between developers and residents and he hoped the reforms government are making will encourage planning departments to work in the interests of local people. Council officers should endeavour to work in the interests of local people and not to work for other interests. It is clear that we are under attack from developers and local people/colleagues feel threatened by these developers. There is a rise in unemployment and these proposals are not in the interests of locals the council should make sure that the planning framework, neighbourhood renewal and community plan, benefit local residents.
SP said it was important for landowners to be included in discussions and it is beneficial to built up relationships rather than ostracising different interests. He said he was not so much a planning officer but a planning processor Southwark is worried about optimistic planning that does not fit with the master plan but they are not in a position to refuse planning applications using the current UDP. They could refuse plans on premature grounds if there was a masterplan and he wanted to get the process rolling. The masterplan is being compiled/prepared for adoption and because it is not finished, it leaves the council open to all applications.
NA pointed out that the landowners were not receiving any money on these sites. The process is very slow and serious sums of money are lost and it could not continue.
DB asked to what extent the Built Environment and other papers could at least be considered?
SP advised that the Elephant & Castle are had been through a similar situation and because Southwark/the proposals had not gone far enough, it allowed other, less popular planning applications to be made and approved. BM asked how long it will take us realistically to get to the same situation and how soon we needed to start. SP said providing there were no hiccups, a masterplan would be available by Christmas of this year. DM said Decathlon could just decide to sell the land and BD agreed that we need to speed up considerably. DB asked what stage the shortlisting is at. SP said that the process was due to start in a couple of weeks. Canada Water is due to be advertised first weekend in March. A basic questionnaire/submission to the council will statutory items such as health & safety, equal opportunities, etc. Developers will be shorted listed and the development brief issued. BH again asked that applications lodged with the Planning Committee be matched against the UDP as it is now.
12. Any Other Business:
None, due to lack of time - meeting closed 10.10
Bulletin 32 (4 February 2002) Bulletin 35 (11 March 2002)