Buses and Trams
Our next meeting will give local people an opportunity to hear the latest news and ask questions about the new Vauxhall Bus Station. Are the waiting areas sufficiently well protected from the weather? Is there enough information on routes - are the bus stops in the right place and how will they work if we have more 'Bendy' buses? It is reported that funding is now available for preliminary work on the Cross-River Tram which is planned to be in operation by by 2011 - could we have a bus on this route while we're waiting. And what will happen to all the other traffic on the proposed Tram route and where will the stops be? We hope to have answers to some of these questions at our next meeting, planned for early April.
At a meeting of Lambeth's Planning Applications Committee on January 18th, at which local residents had again expressed strong opposition to the proposals, it was unanimously agreed to refuse consent.
Although this, the latest application by Freemans, represented a departure from the Council's Development Plan, officers had recommended that permission be granted subject to conditions and to Section 278 and 106 agreements.
Objectors pointed out that although minor changes had been made the proposal was largely unchanged from the one which had been refused two years ago. Lambeth Council wants to retain the Victorian printing works which dominates the site but which is out of scale with everything else in the Conservation Area, including the nearby grade II - listed 135 Clapham Road, originally designed as part of a semi-detached pair, but derelict for many years. A controversial aspect of this and previous applications is the Council's wish to create a pedestrian link between Liberty Street and Clapham Road, along the back garden walls of houses in Durand Gardens which is viewed by local residents as a security risk.
StGeorge's Tower - Public Inquiry
At the time of writing there is still no news of a decision following the Public Inquiry last year into Lambeth Council's refusal to approve plans by StGeorge for a 50-storey tower by the corner of Nine Elms Lane.
Annual General Meeting
The 35th Annual General Meeting of the Vauxhall Society was held on Tuesday 28th September 2004 at the Vauxhall StPeter's Heritage Centre. Following approval of the Annual Report and the adoption of the Accounts, the following Officers and members of the Executive Committee were elected:
Jim NicolsonCommittee members:
Honorary Independent Examiner
Norma Williamson, of the Brixton Society was re-appointed as
for the Society's Accounts.
We Need Your Help!
The Society needs the support of its members to enable it to continue its role in safeguarding the environment in which we live. In particular we need more help in organising events and meetings, and in monitoring Planning Applications.
Peter Reed has done an excellent job in setting up the Society's Website at vauxhallsociety.org.uk. and has recently registered the site for a further two years, but he has now moved away from our area and would like to hand over the job of Webmaster to someone else. If you can help, please contact Jim Nicolson.
Cleaner or Safer Streets?
The Pedestrians' Association -'Living Streets', supports the new Clean Neighbourhoods Bill which aims to tackle litter, graffiti, abandoned cars and dog fouling, as well as noise and light pollution, faulty burglar alarms and chewing gum. There is some concern, however, at the proposed power to close off alleyways between back gardens, and the omission of controls to prevent wheelie bins being left permanent-ly on the pavement.
The Association is also opposing proposals in the Road Safety Bill which would lower the penalties for driving at between 30 and 39mph in 30mph zones. The Association points out that it is within this speed range that the chances of death or serious injury are greatly increased, and argues that the limit should be lowered to 20mph in what it calls 'community streets'. The Vauxhall Society would prefer to see this applied to all our local streets.
Since our last Newsletter we have heard that Brunswick House has been bought by the LASSCO Architectural Antiques Company who intend to restore it for use as their central London showroom. It seems that they have no plans to move it to Camberwell, and we now understand that the Mary Datchelor site, where the Camberwell Society wanted to relocate it, has been sold by the Save the Children Fund to Bee Bee Developments, a firm specialising in the building of large office blocks.
The Friends of West Norwood Cemetery are hoping to provide a suitable replacement memorial for the one that was lost from the tomb of George Tinworth and his mother Jane.
George, born in 1843, was the son of a Walworth wheelwright. At eighteen he joined JCL Sparkes' evening classes at the Lambeth School of Art, and Sparkes introduced him to Henry Doulton for whom he worked for the rest of his life. Tinwoth is best known for his terracotta panels, one of which survives over the doorway to South Bank House, the former Doulton Works in Black Prince Road. His memorial to Henry Fawcett, given by Henry Doulton to mark the site of Fawcett's house in Vauxhall Park, was broken up in the 1960s although it is thought that Fawcett's head survives. A fountain by Tinworth, in Kennington Park, also given by Doulton, has been badly damaged but will be partly restored.