Forum General Meeting 6.30pm
Wednesday 9 November | Globe House | Corner of Bermondsey St & Crucifix Lane
The next Neighbourhood Forum meeting will be held at 6.30pm on Wednesday 9 November at Globe House.
This meeting is to discuss:
- The New Hotel/Restaurant proposal for 176-178 Bermondsey Street previously The Ticino Bakery
- The Draft Neighbourhood Plan and any feedback from Southwark Council
The New Hotel/Restaurant proposal for 176-178 Bermondsey Street
(Former Ticino Bakery)
Proposed front elevation:
OBF has been consulted by developers, Frontier Estates, on a proposed new Restaurant/Hotel in the former Ticino Bakery building at No 176-178 Bermondsey St. Developers are now obliged in the case of major developments to consult community groups in advance of making their planning applications. Even for less substantial developments such as the Ticino Bakery proposal it is now considered good practice and advised by the planners. This is a welcome evolution of the planning process that has been fully embraced by Frontier Estates in this instance. They have agreed to present their proposal, along with their architect, Ian McKnight of Hall McKnight, to an open meeting of the Forum on 9 November.
Policy concerns that arise for the Forum are:
(1) The danger of Bermondsey St becoming home to multiple large scale restaurant premises that inevitably attract the kind of chain restaurants that threaten to undermine the small-scale, independent identity street.
(2) The application of conservation area design considerations for street frontages in a sensitive location such as Bermondsey St itself.
In respect of (1) the draft neighbourhood plan calls for a limit on the size of new restaurant premises to some 800 sq ft. The Ticino proposal is for some 3 500 sq ft, giving 125 covers in the restaurant with another 30? Or so in the bar area. Clearly this size of restaurant premises is unlikely to be within the reach of small independent restaurateurs. The developers say only that it will be a high-end operator to who it will be let.
In respect of (2) the application of conservation area principles in this situation is likely to be a matter of lively debate. The current proposal is a good case-study: The front elevation of the Ticino Bakery building in not an example of great craftsmanship or originality. It is however, in materials, scale and form, a (slightly adulterated) expression of the Victorian industrial vernacular of the Bermondsey St area. The new proposal calls for a self-confident complete replacement. The question then arises whether the replacement lives up to its assertiveness or whether a more modest intervention would be more fitting. This is an issue that the Forum needs to confront when moving towards some guidance principles that we want to see applied in the most sensitive parts of our neighbourhood area.
The Draft Neighbourhood Plan
Following a three week consultation period with our draft plan on the OBF website we have now submitted the revised draft to the Council for feedback. (Click here for the Neighbourhood Plan Draft Oct 2016 & Covering Letter To Council). Thank you to those who submitted comments. These have been incorporated where they add clarity. Where they are matters on which opinions may differ they have been reserved for consideration collectively at an open meeting.
If we receive the Council’s comments by the date of the meeting we will move on to discuss them after the presentation and discussion of the Ticino site proposal.
Anyone interested in these issues, please do try to attend.