Newsletter No. 11, November 1999
Newsletter No. 11, November 1999 Free distribution to 250 households
The next HNA meeting will be held at,
The Friends Meeting House
30th November 1999
with tea and coffee.
Neighbourhood Religious Communities
Guest Speaker: Sarah Thorley.
Come and meet leaders and members of 6 or more local churches and Hindu temple. Find out what they have to offer in the way of congregational worship, pastoral support and community services (lunch clubs, youth groups, halls to rent…)
In this issue:
v Planning updates on:
Ø Maplestead Road
Ø The Church Hall Development
v What’s On IN Brixton Xmas Special
v Minutes of the HomeZone meeting held on 10th November.
September HNA Meeting
At the September HNA meeting, the discussion centred around Homezones and Controlled Parking. Councillors from all parties were invited to attend the meeting, but only Ashley Lumsden from the Liberal Democrats (Streatham Hill ward) attended the meeting. Toren Smith (Labour) and John Whelan (Conservative) did not bother to turn up or to send their apologies for not attending. Our views are important and we expect our local councillors to listen to us and support our views.
coming HNA Meeting (Tues 30th Nov)
At the next HNA meeting, to be held on Tuesday 30th September, we have invited Sarah Thorley to come and discuss the different religions represented in the area. Representatives from 6 or more local places of worship have been invited to talk for about 5 minutes each. There will be time for questions and discussion, followed by refreshments and informal conversation.
Contributors invited include:
· Friends Meeting House
· Brixton Hill Methodist Church
· United Reformed Church
· Caribbean Hindu Society
· Christ Church Anglican Church
· Gospel Tabernacle Assembly
· Corpus Christi Roman Catholic Church
· Brixton Prison Chaplaincy
· Yoga Classes
Please come to what will be a very informative, enjoyable and interesting evening.
Planning update by Janith Wong
Since the Secretary of the Environments’s unambiguous ruling in May this year, residents in the vicinity of the builders yard have been looking forward to having the peace, quiet and visual amenity of this area restored; no more early morning disturbance from loading and unloading, no more skip parked permanently on the roadside.
It has come as a great shock therefore, that Lambeth Planning Department has granted a ONE YEAR extension for the owners to take down the unauthorised building. The decision has been made unilaterally under the Council Policy of preserving local businesses.
You may remember that the shed was due to have been taken down by mid-October. The owners have approached Lambeth Council on the basis that they are experiencing difficulty in finding alternative premises. HNA understand that the Council are helping the owners find suitable premises in conjunction with granting the extension of time.
On the basis of give and take in this situation, Jo Russell, Lambeth’s Planning Enforcement Officer has asked for suggestions which would make the environment more acceptable during this period of transition. If you feel that you are suffering as a result of this decision and have suggestions for improving the environment, please contact Duncan Law (0181 678 6617) or Jannith Wong (0181 678 7208) or write to Jo Russell direct at Lambeth Council Planning Department, Acre House, 10 Acre lane, SW2
Church hall development
By Duncan Law
For the especial attention of residents of Cotherstone and Holmewood Roads, it is worth mentioning that the deadline for registering objections to the proposed plans for the Church Hall site is 19 November. Duncan has written on behalf of residents recording the objections that were made at the open meeting but it is good that indivduals write.
Plans can be viewed at the planning department office at 10 Acre Lane and Duncan at 44 Holmewood Road has a simple plan. Observations or objections should be addressed to Sonia Watson at 10 Acre Lane, SW2 5SG and preferably copied to our councillors, Toren Smith, Tom Franklin and Judith Brodie at the Town Hall, SW2 1RW. The proximity and bulk of the proposed semi-detached houses to the back of the houses in Holmewood Road is a major objection and the parking up against the garden fences of some residents is another. Two mature lime trees out of seven which are subject to Tree Preservation Orders will have to go. Increased traffic in Cotherstone Road where the entrance to the site will be, together with possible loss of parking due to the required sweep into the driveway, may also provoke objections
Peter’s Peppers and the Wing Hing, two local restaurant at the top of Moorish Road near Brixton Hill, sadly seem to have closed down. Does anyone know what happened? They will be missed, Peters Peppers especially by local vegetarians.
The Brixtonian Havana Club will be having an Xmas Champagne buffet/or dinner and Millennium Champagne night full of music and Celebs.Tel 0171-924-9262
The Oriental Cottage, Coldharbour Lane, tel. 0171-274-2020 or 737-5888
The Fridge Café tel. 0171-326-5100
The Timgad, Station Road, a new North African Restaurant and Take-away by Brixton Market. Lovely décor what wonderful North African Berber tiles which adourn the restaurant. A good, delicious, inexpensive menu. I love Moroccan, Tunisian and Algerian food. Give it a try !!!!!!!!!!! tel. 0171-274-0659
The Jacaranda, Station Road, Good for ‘Saturday Tea’ and after a walk around Brixton’s new craft markets. Tel. 0171-274-8383
Atlanta Ballet will be performing ‘Peter Pan’ at the Royal Festival Hall from 21/12/99 onwards. Tickets priced at £12.50-£32. Tel Box Office 0171-960-4242. Concessions available.
English National Ballet will be performing the following ballets at the London Coliseum
a) ‘The Nutcracker’ 14/12/99-8/1/2000
b) ‘Triple Bill is ’La Bayadere’; ‘The Rites of Spring’ and ‘Sphinx’ 10th-12th Jan 2000
c) ‘Coppelia’ 13th-15th Jan 2000
Tel Box Office for the above on 0171-623-8000.
The London Coliseum is a wonderful place to see Ballet or to go to the Opera. It is my favourite theatre in London. The above programme is an exciting one, why not go and see the new version of ‘The Nutcracker’? I’ve seen 10 previous versions, all worth while. If you’re feeling rich book a box why not? Treat yourself!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
For other dance shows see ‘The Guardian’s’ Guide or one of the other major newspaper’s listings.
The following theatres will have shows for children and adults, please telephone the theatre’s box office for programme and price of ticket.
Battersea Arts Centre
‘Pinnochio’ tel. 0171-223-2223
Lyric Theatre/ Hammersmith
‘Hansel & Gretel’ tel. 0181-741-2311
Upper Tooting Road Theatre
‘Nomads Puppets’ tel. 0181-767-4005
Polka Theatre/ Wimbledon
‘The Borrowers’ tel. 0208-543-4888
The Colour House Theatre ‘Goldilocks and the 3 Bears’ tel. 0181-542-6644
The little Angel Theatre
‘Tsar Sultan’ tel. 0171-226-1787
Wimbledon Theatre ‘Rosie & Jim’ ‘Peter Pan’ tel. 0208-540-0326
The Lyceum Theatre ‘The Lion King’ tel. 0870-4000-600. It’s almost impossible to get tickets until June 2000 for Saturday matinees, but you may get tickets if you queue up on the day. Good luck!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
‘Dick Whittington’ tel. 0181-858-7755.
Brixton Ritzy tel. 0171 737 2121for Xmas programme
Clapham Picture House tel. 0171-498-3232 for Xmas programme.
ABC Streatham tel. 0181 769 1928
Odeon Streatham tel. 0870 505 0007
Tower of London tel. 0171-709-0765
The Science Museum tel. 020-7942-4454
The Imperial War Museum tel. 0171-416-5000
Brixton Gallery – Brixton Market
198 of Fulham Palace tel.0171-736-3233
Wandsworth Museum tel. 0181-871-7074
Bethnal Green Museum of Childhood tel. 0208-980-2415
Why not join the following Societies:
The Brixton Society deals with local Victorian, Edwardian and Modern history of the Lambeth areas. It also prints articles of peoples memories of times gone by. It is concerned with Environmental and planning issues in and around Lambeth. Join our Society tel.0171-274-3835.
The Friends of Brockwell Park this society is solely occupied with all matters concerning our dear and wonderful Park. Thank God for them!!!!!!!!!! For membership details tel. 0181-761-7278.
That’s all folks !!!!!!!!!!!!! Have a wonderful Xmas and a brilliant Millennium Party.
homezone meeting by Duncan Law
Minutes of the Homezone Meeting held Wednesday 10th november
Agenda for HOME ZONE Public Meeting
1. Welcome, Introductions and Apologies (Hand over meeting to facilitator)
2. Video:’At Home in my Street’ produced by the Children’s Play Council about a fact-finding mission to visit Home Zones in Europe. Followed by a ‘Reactions’ Brainstorm.
3. What we want this Consultation/ Participation to be like. (Brainstorm of Watchwords and Ground Rules)
4. Practical Stuff:
Who is involved?
Timetable of the project?
5. Consultation / Participation: What does it mean and how do we do it?
6. A local Holmewood Home Zone Group? A facilitator? Do we need and who?
7. When: is our next meeting?
What: is our next action?
8. Final brainstorm...
1. All attendees were welcomed with tea, coffee and biscuits and given a name badge. Each household placed a green dot on the map showing where they lived. The attendance was estimated at about 60 people.
Duncan welcomed everyone. Everyone introduced themselves to someone they didn’t know near them, to break ice and get us talking to ourselves – fundamental to this process. He then introduced Tim Gill, director of the children’s Play Council; Julie Lewis of the New Economics Foundation Community Engagement Group who facilitated the remainder of the meeting as an independent non-resident; Babette Blaedel Flajsner local and national campaigner for Home Zones. He forgot to introduce Susan Heinrich from Planning Aid for London, a specialist in community planning using `Planning for Real’. Duncan then read out Brian Fitzpatrick’s apologies and his statement which ended `Please get involved as the success of the project depends upon participation!’ Duncan also gave Tim Cuthbert, the traffic consultant’s apologies. Both had originally planned to be there. He then handed over to Julie Lewis. Babette Blaedel-Flajsner from the Brixton Triangle Neighbourhood Association, the other scheme in the Lambeth Home Zone bid, wished us well and stressed that partnership and community involvement were the keys to a
successful Home Zone.
2. The Video `At Home in our Streets’ was shown. Brainstorm of `Reactions to the Video’: (after a 2 minutes each way Think and Listen in Pairs).
· The culture in Holland and here is different: attitudes to cars, bikes, children, old people..
· Therefore we have to be more drastic to change the culture.
· It is good to mix generations
· Save the Gardens (i.e. don’t muck around with them)
· Peace and tranquillity impressive.
· Plants important
· No vetting of residents as sometimes happens in Holland.
· How do we tell non-residents not to park here?
· Better public transport necessary to reduce reliance on cars
· The commitment of the council to maintain HZ is important if it is not to fail.
· How much will this cost?
· It should not encourage conformity.
· Parking outside our houses is important.
· I hate humps.
· Good to see good urban design, with street sculpture.
· Important to actively encourage people to use the street for play, social life, walking.
· We have the advantage of the park. How to enhance that...
· This area has no space specifically suitable for older people.
· Teenage behaviour can be threatening
· We must change the culture.
· More lighting necessary.
· What are the implications regarding parking restrictions?
· We should retain the Victorian character of the Gardens (which is in a Conservation Area)
· We need to exclude non-local traffic.
· Pedestrian routes should follow desire lines.
3. Next we brainstormed what we want our Consultation / Participation to be like. This will establish Watchwords and Ground Rules for the Process.
· INCLUSIVE of everyone
· OPEN. All meetings should be open
· fully RECORDED (video was suggested later)
· We should strive to arrive at a CONSENSUS with which everyone can be HAPPY
· `deciding together’
· Fully INFORMED - of what is possible
· pictures and plans - of what other places have done, an EXHIBITION.
· of what is on offer (funding, facilitation, support,
· what other local groups should be consulted
· ACTIVE PARTICIPATION
· RESIDENT LED. `It’s about us’
· Using Planning for Real
· Good COMMUNICATION
· Good listening, concise talking, good facilitation / chair
· Well PREPARED
· Enough TIME
· Well RESOURCED
· COUNCIL PRESENT at meetings
· DETAILED SURVEY of what we have, what we want to keep, what we want to improve.
· done in such a way that we can PICTURE THE OUTCOME before the go-ahead is given.
· to create OWNERSHIP
4,5,6. (In the ensuing discussion these 3 agenda topics overlapped and were discussed together)
Brian Fitzpatrick’s letter was read out again. The deadline of March for a finished plan was noted. Duncan reported Tim Cuthbert of MVA saying that if the start date had to be pushed back a bit because a mutually acceptable design was not ready then so be it.
We then began to look at who would be involved in the Consultation to discover the
dynamics of the process. We drew a diagram to try and understand and map the relationships and flows of information. We entered the composition of the Lambeth Project Team as contained in the letter. It was mooted that there should be an resident on the Lambeth Project Team as an observer.
It was agreed that we should ask for complete openness and transparency from the Lambeth Project Team.
In reading out the letter the difference between the implied reactive meaning of `consultation’ in the last lines of the second paragraph and the rallying cry to `participation’ in the last was noted. Julie Lewis explained the New Economics Foundation’s `Ladder of Participation’ in which Consultation is separate and below Partnership and is grouped with Informing and Placation under `Tokenism’ (p2 of Participation Works, NEF)
It was unanimously decided that we could not accept this type of Consultation. Active Participation was sought with a Resident Led process which from now on we will call a `Participation Process’. The bid spoke of Partnership and this kind of involvement fits with the aims and objectives of Local Agenda 21.
We discussed whether a local project team was necessary to mirror the council Project Team to function mainly as a SUPPORT GROUP to the participation process. Tasks such as organising, facilitating meetings, research, collection and dissemination of information, monitoring and recording of the process were sufficiently demanding and important to necessitate such a SUPPORT GROUP. Its meetings might be convened separately
from the General Meetings but would be completely open. (see `all meetings open’ in the Watchwords and Ground Rules). Its exact composition will be decided later but a number of people expressed a desire to be part of it.
It was thought that we would probably have to bring in more funding to realise what the
local people would like both by way of a process and as an end result.
It was thought that the Participation process could only happen face to face not through representatives or intermediaries, in a process which enable us to bring ideas from everyone to the Council.
Sue Heinrich of Planning Aid for London explained the Planning for Real process and it was widely agreed that we should go down this line holding a large inclusive event sometime in December. She warned that experts should be carefully briefed if they were going to be there so that their contributions did not become prescriptive or proscriptive. It is very easy to destroy the free and creative flow of ideas she warned.
We then sought to define who the local residents were: a first rather curtailed brainstorm brought out:
· Older people
· young children
· car owners
· dog owners
· people who don’t come to meetings including the housebound.
· (other groups might include families with kids, families without kids, single people, members of ethnic minorities...)
(It was stated that that the HNA committee has population data from the 1991 Census. Representation by location of dwelling was indicated by the green dots on the map, which was displayed. There were one or two corners obviously ill represented.)
Other groups on the margins who must be involved include
· Roupel Park Estate Residents
· Other local street residents for whom we are a logical through route.
· Local Schools and Nurseries, PTAs
· Local Churches
· Playground users - a `User Group’ is planned
· Cycle Groups
· The Emergency Services and Police
· Local businesses (e.g. Pinewood, the Pizza Chalet, Apollo)
Due to lack of time we failed to discuss whether we wanted to continue having an independent facilitator, who it should be and what precisely their role would be. But Julie Lewis was warmly applauded and feedback since has been that her detached presence was immensely useful.
Nor did we have time for the final brainstorm.
7. It was decided that we should begin the Participation Process with a meeting sometime in early December at which we would begin the Planning for Real outlined by Susan Heinrich. The current HNA committee were asked to continue facilitating for the present. The meeting ended at 10.15pm. Many thanks to Rev. Chris Ivory of Christchurch who offered us the hall and looked after us so well.
** During the meeting Laura and Emily, aged 10-11, who had begun `Planning for Real’ on a large scale map during the meeting explained their plans for our Home Zone before they had to leave. Their designs will be kept and will contribute to the planning process. Their ideas included better playing facilities especially for older kids;
· raising the road to pavement level at least for extended chunks
· a 5mph speed limit!
· limiting each household to only 1 car!
The will of the meeting was that the Consultation Procession should be renamed a Participation Process in the light of the Home Office advice (Report of the Policy Action Team on Community Self Help) ‘Generally consultation with the community on the basis of an almost settled draft is considered sufficient to demonstrate partnership. It is not.’
We want to be actively involved from the outset and enabled to be creative contributors to the redesigning of our environment. The meeting resolved to do Planning for Real. There was a desire that the process should be as inclusive as possible. We plan to be as open as possible, to fully record our proceedings and decisions and to facilitate direct, unmediated communication between residents and the Lambeth Project Team. We ask and expect a corresponding openness from the Lambeth Project Team. We would ask the Team to be present at our open meetings.
We plan to convene a meeting probably early December in consultation with you and the Lambeth Team to look at what our problems are; what we like about our neighbourhood; what we want to keep; what to change and what we definitely don’t want. From this we will have an list of AIMS AND OBJECTIVES of our Home Zone.
At a `Planning for Real’ event in the new year we would begin the process of finding our solution to the problems. At the same time we hope to convene a meeting where the best wisdom of what is possible can be pooled and made available to the Planning for Real process. We hope Graham Smith, Professor of Urban Design at Oxford Brookes University, and a major advocate of Home Zones, will be able to be there. We plan to open it to representatives from other groups in Lambeth and from other boroughs but its primary function would be inform members of the local community who might want to become involved in the design of their Home Zone using hands-on `Planning for Real’ techniques. Any help from the Lambeth Project Team and MVA on this essential `information gathering’ would be gratefully received.
We are committed to raising as much funding as possible to make this a project not bound by limited finances. We have begun to look around for community group funding to help pay for the kind of participation that we want. We would appreciate any help the Lambeth Project Team can give us on this front too - perhaps to help raise larger sums that may be required to help realise the kind of Home Zone that we want to see.
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