Southend Village & Bromley Rd Update

Bromley Rd Image

Over the last few years I have been leading work within Lewisham Council on the new planning guidelines for the Bromley Rd/Southend Village. Many local residents will know that back in 2007, in response to residents’ concerns, I insisted upon a special document for this area to look at how we might manage developments on sites such as the former Green Man Pub, the former Tiger’s Head Pub and the former Courts site.

It’s almost unheard of for the council to carry out a piece of work like this in such a small area but it felt important to me to respond to local views about the changes that had taken place in the neighbourhood and the concerns that were being expressed about how Southend Village and this stretch of Bromley Road may develop in the future.

In October 2007, I kicked the process off by taking a motion to council which read as follows:

“That this Council notes the proposals for development on the Bromley Road, particularly in relation to the Green Man, the Tiger’s Head and the former Courts store; recognises the concerns of local residents about the impact of new development on the area’s social infrastructure; calls upon the Mayor to convene a public meeting of local councillors, site owners and developers to commission a planning brief for the area to be reported back to full Council”.

Bromley Road consultation event - Feb '08

Since then a number of public meetings have been held (see picture above) and a considerable amount of work done on how new homes may impact upon things like school places, GP waiting lists and traffic. We have listened carefully to what local people have been saying about the need for better amenities (shops, community facilities, somewhere to go for a drink) and the need for a better pedestrian environment (cars seem to rule at the junction of Whitefoot Lane and Bromley Rd).

Whilst we have had to take into consideration that planning permission has already been granted for schemes on two of the big sites (the Tiger’s Head and Courts site – the latter against the wishes of the Council), we have come up with a document that we hope to use to guide future applications that come up.

I updated the Southend Village Action Group this evening (22 June) and explained that this document would be going to public consultation over the summer. We had a discussion and whilst I don’t anticipate that all residents will be happy with everything in the document, I think it does start to address some issues and I look forward to receiving feedback over the summer.

I suspect this won’t be the last post on this subject …

Southend Village News Shopper 05.03.08

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