BVAG Meeting Wednesday 15th March

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BVAG Meeting
Current Anti-Social Development Proposals
Wednesday 15 March 6.30pm
 |Globe House | Corner of Bermondsey Street & Crucifix Lane

Our area is again under threat from a variety of anti-social development proposals.  There are currently on the table several at different stages of gestation that threaten the local townscape and public amenity.


The old Ticino Bakery at 176-178 Bermondsey Street
Planning Application ref: 16/AP/4727


This application is aimed with some precision at the kinds of high street chains that we have always worried would soon be targeting Bermondsey St.  From its large 4 500 sq ft of floorspace to its Look-at-Me front elevation it is tailor-made for a chain operator.  It is scheduled to be considered by the Planning Committee on Tuesday 21 March.  We will be making a representations.  It is particularly worrying that the applicants have been able to claim the Council’s conservation officers have told them:  ‘The existing building is considered to be of no historic value. It appears to be of early to mid-20th century construction’  Even the most inexperienced conservation officer should have been able to recognise that this is wrong and the yellow stock bricks of the facade and the derrick date it to the 19th century.  The Head of Conservation has been asked to attend the meeting (but don’t bet on him putting his head above the parapet; he has not responded to several calls and emails).  Another concern is the large basement proposed which,  if allowed, will be hugely disruptive to traffic on Bermondsey St.  It is clear that Southwark’s planners have not taken note of the effects of the basement rush that has blighted Westminster and Kensington & Chelsea where, in generally much more compatible street scales and ground conditions, there are widespread problems with damage and disruption to neighbours.

Combined representations from objectors at planning committee meetings are limited to 3 minutes.  At next week’s meeting we will consider ours.

Tanner St Park / Bermondsey St/Hatchers Mews
Planning Application ref: 17/AP/0469


This application is remarkable for its opacity.  The drawings shown on the A4 poster pinned on the park notice board by an anonymous concerned resident are all that can be found on the Southwark website.  And these could take a while to find themselves as the drawing titles are distinctly unhelpful.  What is clear is that the proposal would radically alter the experience of the park with an enormous change in the sees of enclosure, the overlooking and the loss of sunlight.  What made the planners think that the applicants should not be asked to produce a decent coloured elevation and perspective drawing before the application was put out to consultation is anyone’s guess.  We have invited the planning officer concerned to come and explain – but again, don’t be disappointed if he doesn’t show up; accountability is not a mantra of Southwark’s planners.

London City Mission
Tower Bridge Road
This site is rumoured to be proposed for a 15-story tower.  It is not yet clear whether the planners have given a green light to this audacious ambition – but stranger things have happened.  Concerned next door neighbour and architect, Arthur Timothy, has agreed to come and tell us what he has found out about the proposal and hopefully bring a representative of the London City Mission who own the building.

Guiness Estate

This estate has for some while been facing a proposed two-floor rooftop extension.  It is an obvious opportunity to restore the original roofline of the building whilst adding additional residential accommodation.  Ambitiously and heritage-sensitively approached the proposal could be beyond reproach.  In practice the proposal is likely to be for cheap construction with little regard for reinstatement of the original glory of this landmark estate.  Our researches are ongoing and we will be giving an update at the meeting.

The old Selected Rug Co. 74-84 Long Lane
Spaces Co Living project

long lane plan
One of the few remaining buildings of character on Long Lane was the subject of a consultation last month in relation to a proposal for a ‘co-living’ tower.  The developers (or rather their PR team) were less than transparent about who they are and where they are in the invariable deal with the planners prior to the consultation charade that follows the agreed application.  It was equally far from clear what treatment they are proposing for the existing Rug Co. building (pictured).  Notes to be compared at the meeting.


The Ticino and Tanner St Park applications can be found on the Southwark website under the application references quoted above.  Our followers are urged to see them for themselves and make their own representations but of course to come to the meting to find out more.

All welcome

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7th March12th March
WOW – Women of the World festival at Southbank Centre champions gender equality, celebrating the achievements of women and girls everywhere and examining the obstacles that keep them from fulfilling their potential.

Hear influential and challenging speakers, take part in mentoring sessions and workshops, and see some of the best female comedians, musicians, performers and writers around.

Past speakers have included Malala Yousafzai, Julie Walters, Shami Chakrabarti, Gordon Brown MP, Salma Hayek, Annie Lennox, Caitlin Moran, Vivienne Westwood, Grayson Perry, Sandi Toksvig, Leymah Gbowee, Patrick Stewart and Christine Lagarde.

Our 2017 programme is now on sale, with information on Day and Weekend Passes as well as one–off events with Sandi Toksvig and Gillian Anderson.

International Women’s Day 2017 events


Each year International Women’s Day sees thousands of events – global gatherings, conferences, awards, exhibitions, festivals, fun runs, corporate events, concert performances, speaking events, online digital gatherings and more. Events are held by women’s networks, corporations, charities, educational institutions, government bodies, political parties, the media and further communities.

TOMORROW – Free Event for Women and Girls at the Livesey Exchange


Free workshop session tomorrow afternoon for International Women’s Day 2017. This is a free event for girls to make their own toolbox and will be an excellent opportunity to learn some basic skills, make new friends, find out what is happening at the Livesey Exchange and go home with your own toolbox!

The session is open from 4pm – 8pm at the Livesey Exchange, Ledbury Estate, Bird in Bush Road SE15 1QP.

Protect Council Estates From Demolition

From Elephant Amenity Network

Dear Friend

Consultation on the Mayor’s Guide for Estate Regeneration is due to close on March 14 and a cross London campaign has begun to defend estates facing regeneration – Demolition Watch ; this is the website .

At the moment  there is one major demand being put to the Mayor – that there must  be a ballot of estate residents, to approve any  regeneration proposals. 

 A ballot is an elementary protection of estate resident’s interests and the very least that should be required before any regeneration goes ahead. You can help secure estate ballots by doing two things;

1/by signing this petition;

2/by submitting a question to our GLA representative, Florence Eshalomi, to be put to the Mayor at his public question time.  There is a model question below and it can be sent to, asking her to submit it for his question time.

There is little doubt that more and more estates are being lined up for regeneration and we must get effective protection of estate residents in place, so please help.



1) Resident Support

The Mayor has said regeneration should “only take place where there is resident support”. Official Guidance on Estate Regeneration (published December 2016) says that, where the proposals include demolition of tenants and leaseholders’ homes, a vote can be ‘appropriate’ to demonstrate the required ‘majority resident support’.

Does the Mayor agree that;

  • There should be a ballot where it is proposed that residents homes be demolished and,
  • GLA funding and planning approval support would not be made available for any schemes involving demolition without such a ballot?


Southwark home library service and rooms for hire in libraries

Dear all,

The Southwark Community Engagement team has passed me your contact details as the secretary or chair of one of our local tenant’s and resident’s groups. I hope you don’t mind if I draw your attention to two services that Southwark Libraries currently provides to local residents- namely our Home Library Service, and our library rooms for hire. We think that these services could be of interest to your group members, so if there is any opportunity to display the attached posters that would be much appreciated (I can post out high quality versions of the posters if required, rather than you printing them out).

 Rooms for hire:

Do you need to hire a room for a meeting, conference or any other event? Southwark Libraries offer a number of rooms for hire throughout the borough, at the heart of Southwark’s vibrant communities. Whether you want space for 140 people or an interview room for two we have a range of rooms that can help.  And with rooms at Camberwell, Canada Water, Dulwich, John Harvard, Peckham and Kingswood libraries we have Southwark covered. Discounted rates are available for charities and community groups.

For a full list of rooms, cost, capacities and facilities please see the room booking web page:

For enquiries please email:

Home Library Service:

The Home Library Service has a direct beneficial impact on the wellbeing of the residents that we serve, many of whom are housebound and have little other social contact. The service is free of charge for Southwark residents who are not able to get to their local library. Once a month our staff will deliver library items directly to a resident’s home, or to their sheltered unit or nursing home. This service is ideal for those with disabilities (children and adults), older people and their carers, and people who cannot visit the library due to accident or illness. The home library service offers all types of library materials (books, CDs, DVDs, Blu-Ray, books on cassette and CD) and free reservations on all library stock. More detailed information can be found here:

If there is anything you could do to signpost your users to our services, where you feel it could be of benefit to them, this would be greatly appreciated.

Many thanks,

Brian Cape

Library Contracts and Performance Manager

Southwark Libraries

Wilson Road



0207 525 1575 (Tooley Street extension 84066)

07983626176 (also 07751315016)