Category Archives: Environment

PLANNING and DEVELOPMENT Bulletin No.5, 30 August 2017

This is the latest in our series of updates on planning matters in and around the Copers Cope Area.  It’s been a while since our last bulletin, so this is quite a long one.

If you feel strongly about any of the planning applications below that are currently being considered by London Borough of Bromley, you can leave your comments by clicking the links provided, then clicking on the comments tab.  Don’t forget to give your name and address, otherwise your views may not be considered.

 

Two More Major Residential Development Applications:

Maybrey Business Park, Worsley Bridge Road 16/05897/FULL

Planning approval was refused in May for a large residential development on the Maybrey Business Park site, near to Lower Sydenham Station.

The site, next to the old Dylon site, itself undergoing redevelopment, is currently occupied by two light industrial buildings dating from the 1930s, comprising nine business units.  Maybrey Works, which sits next to an area of Metropolitan Open Land occupied by sports pitches and the Pool River, is part of the Lower Sydenham Business Area and has been allocated as a Locally Significant Industrial Site in LBB’s emerging Local Plan.

The proposal, by Bellway Homes, involved the demolition of the existing structures and the construction of five new residential blocks of between five and nine storeys in height providing 159No dwellings and 1243 sq m of commercial space at ground floor level, plus gym for residents, car parking, landscaping and infrastructure works.  The residential portion of the development comprised 75No one-bed, 56No two-bed (4 person), 6No three-bed (4 person) and 22No three-bed (5 person) flats.

The reasons for refusal were: the site is located within a Business Area in the Council’s emerging Unitary Development Plan; the height and scale of the development would be harmful to the landscape and would have an unacceptable visual impact on its surroundings; the scheme was considered a cramped over-development of the site; and the development would have an unacceptable impact on local transport infrastructure.

The developer has recently appealed against the decision.

 

Footsies Social Club, Lower Sydenham 17/00170/FULL1

Also refused recently was an application for another large-scale residential development, on land adjacent.

The site, presently occupied by Footsies Social Club and playing fields, is on a wedge of open land situated between the New Beckenham / Lower Sydenham rail line and the Pool River, and is next to the old Dylon site where 220 flats are currently under construction.

A previous scheme that proposed a number of residential blocks ranging in height from eight to nine storeys in height providing 253No dwellings was dismissed at appeal last year.

This latest application proposed the demolition of the existing buildings and redevelopment of the site, constructing a four to eight-storey (plus basement) development of 229No dwellings comprising 118No one-bedroom, 103No two-bedroom and 8No three-bedroom flats, together with the construction of an estate road, car and cycle parking and the landscaping of the east part of the site to form open space accessible to the public.

Reasons given for refusal were that: The site is within an area of Metropolitan Open Land and as such, the kind of development proposed was inappropriate; the site was considered inappropriate for tall buildings as they would have an adverse impact on the landscape and this outweighed the proposed benefit of opening up public access to the area of MOL; the applicant failed to show relevant special circumstances applicable to the scheme; the proposal did not provide sufficient affordable housing;

The applicant has subsequently appealed against the decision.  The appeal will be heard over four days from 30th January 2018.

 

Crusader Hall, High Street (behind shops from Cancer Research to Card Factory) 17/00029/FULL1

An application to demolish the existing Crusader Hall Clubhouse, situated behind shops on the High Street and accessed via Legion Alley, and redevelop the site to provide 2No one-bedroom and 7No two-bedroom flats, has been withdrawn.

 

3 Beckenham Road (above Barclays Bank) 16/02218/FULL1

An application in May last year for a three-storey addition, including a large, three-bedroom penthouse on the fifth floor, has been dismissed at appeal.

A proposal to build two additional floors for residential use on top of the two-storey Barclays Bank building opposite the cinema was approved in December last year.  The scheme comprises 2No. one-bedroom and 6No. two-bedroom flats.

 

Beckenham Methodist Church, Bromley Road 16/05699/FULL1

An application for a scheme to redevelop the church was granted planning approval in April.

The principle element of the scheme is a glazed atrium on the west wall of the church to provide a new entrance, community cafe, social space, creche and cloakrooms.  Upgrades to the church building, such as replacing the heating system, lights, flooring and seating, are also planned.  The scheme requires the demolition of the scout huts to the side of the main church building.  The church estimates the work will cost £800,000.

For more information, visit the church to view the plans on display and pick up a leaflet.

 

84 Albermarle Road 16/05788/FULL1

Planning permission was granted in March to demolish the existing large house on the site and replace it with a three-storey block of flats, comprising 6No one-bedroom and 3No two-bedroom dwellings, plus parking and landscaping.

 

13 Lea Road 16/05794/FULL1

A proposal to construct a new end-of-terrace house next to No13 Lea Road, which is located within the High Street Conservation Area, together with roof alterations to No13 itself, was refused permission in April.

Reasons given for refusal were that the proposal: represented a cramped overdevelopment of the site which would appear out of character with the streetscene and had inadequate spatial provision; would form a contrived design which would not respect or complement the form of the neighbouring property and fail to preserve and enhance the surrounding properties on Lea Road and wider Beckenham Town Centre Conservation Area; would result in a loss of existing on-site car parking provision.

 

NatWest Sports Ground, Copers Cope Road 16/05845/FULL1

Following a failed application last year to provide a hand carwash facility on the site, which sits next to Gambados, another application proposing the same use was similarly refused in May.

Reasons given for refusal were that the proposal would result in an inappropriate development on an area of Metropolitan Open Land (MOL); the acoustic report submitted was deficient in a number of areas; the proposal would cause noise and disturbance to the local area.

 

61 The Avenue 17/01955/FULL1

Another planning application is currently being considered by the Council proposing the demolition of the existing house, which is located in the Downs Hill Conservation Area, and development of two blocks comprising 3No two-bedroom flats on the site.

This is the fourth application in as many years and comes, oddly, after a successful application last year to develop the site to provide two new family houses, which in our opinion is more suited to the particular location than flats.

The Council refused the application earlier this month on the grounds that the proposal by reason of the size, height, bulk and massing of the buildings, would result in an overdevelopment of the site and would fail to preserve or enhance the character and appearance of the Downs Hill Conservation Area.

 

10 Copers Cope Road 17/03033

Another retrospective planning application has been made for a basement and ground floor dwelling, that has already been built in the rear garden.  A similar retrospective application was refused last year and LBB had also taken enforcement action.

No 10 is described as a four-storey, end-of-terrace hotel building that has been extensively  refurbished.  In 2015 the owner was granted permission to build a structure in the rear garden to provide additional facilities for the hotel, including a laundry, fitness room, staff room, office, toilets and storage.

The building had since been repurposed to become a three-bedroom dwelling, without permission.  The building had also been found to be larger than the original consent allowed, and included a second lightwell that wasn’t on the consented drawings.

 

56A Foxgrove Road 17/00624/OUT

The Council is currently considering an outline planning application for the demolition of the existing 6No flats and garages and developing a three to four-storey block comprised of 18No flats, with car parking and landscaping.

 

14 Southend Road 17/00664/FULL1

Another application was refused in April for the construction of a three-storey side and rear extension and the conversion of the existing house, which sits in the Southend Conservation Area, to 4No one-bedroom and 1No two-bedroom flats.

The reason given for refusal was that the proposed extension would harm the character of the conservation area due to its prominent siting, height and scale and its relationship to the existing and adjacent buildings.

A similar application was refused last year.

 

45 Beckenham Road 17/02701/FULL1

A planning application has been submitted for the conversion of the semi-detached house to a House of Multiple Occupation (HMO).

8No bedrooms are proposed over the ground, first and second floors, comprising 7No double and 1No singles, providing accommodation for up to 15 people.  Occupants share one kitchen/dining room and several bathrooms.  Only two of the bedrooms have en-suite bathrooms.

 

Carlton Court, 23 Beckenham Road 17/02890/FULL1

A large residential development has been proposed at Carlton Court, a two-storey block of six two-bedroom flats, diagonally opposite the Fire Station, on the corner with Hayne Road.

The planning application proposes the demolition of the existing building and garage block and the construction of a four-storey block of 30No flats comprised of 11No one-bedroom, 18No two-bedroom and 1No three-bedroom flats.

The existing block provides accommodation for up to 24 people, whereas this new proposal will accommodate up to 88 people, however only 15No car parking spaces are provided for future residents.

This is a significantly larger scheme than the one granted planning approval last autumn, which was to add one storey to the existing building, providing 4No additional flats.

 

Chinese Garage, Wickham Road 17/03273/RECON

Planning and Listed Building Consent was granted in December last year for the conversion of this landmark building from a car dealership and garage to 2No ground floor retail units and 2No two-bedroom flats on the first floor.

The drawings submitted with the original application 16/02988/FULL suggested that the two retail units would be occupied by Pets at Home and Majestic Wine.   However this more recent application, for extended operating hours in the morning and evening, makes clear that Tesco now intend to take the lease, instead of Pets at Home.

There has already been much concern among local residents about the effect this proposal may have on the traffic congestion around the area of the roundabout where the building is located, increased noise and pollution, increased frequency of delivery vehicles, and the possible negative effect a supermarket would have on the parade of shops and businesses opposite.

At the time of writing there had been over 600 letters of objection to the proposal.

The official deadline for commenting on the application is 31st August, although your views will still be taken into account after this date if you email the case officer russell.penn@bromley.gov.uk and planning@bromley.gov.uk stating the case reference 17/03273/RECON in the subject line (remember to include your name and address at the end of your email, otherwise your views may not be considered).

 

Eden Park High School, Balmoral Avenue 16/03145/OUT

Outline planning permission was granted in June for a new secondary school on the South Suburban Co-Op Society site in Elmers End.

The controversial scheme provides a new school with eight forms of entry catering for up to 1,680 pupils.  The development comprises 2No two to three-storey teaching buildings totalling 13,500 square metres, plus sports hall, playing fields, multi-use games area, floodlighting, parking and access road.

According to their website, the school is due to open this September with 180 Year 7 pupils in temporary accommodation.

 

Change of use from Commercial to Residential

Three years ago, the Government relaxed the planning laws to make it very easy to convert office premises to residential use.  Over this period, the majority of office space on Beckenham High Street, much of which was fully-let and in demand, has been given approval to be converted to flats.  Minimum space standards that are required for new-build or conversions do not apply to dwellings converted from offices, so many of these flats can be very cramped.

The largest of these sites include St Brides’s House (now complete), Marqueen House, Ironstone House and Provident House on Burrell Row, Kelsey House at Thornton’s Corner and Burnhill House on Burnhill Road.  As a result, many thousands of square feet of purpose-built office space has been lost and cannot be reclaimed.

 

Here are some of the latest applications for conversion from office to residential  use:

Newbeck Court, 125 Park Road 16/05068/FULL2

An application for the change of use of the offices at Newbeck Court, next to the railway and adjacent to New Beckenham Station, to residential use comprising 2no. two-bedroom  and 1No one-bedroom flats with 3no. car park spaces, has been approved.

 

8-12 Bromley Road (above Chom Chom restaurant) 17/01036/RESPA

A change-of-use application has been approved to convert the two floors of offices over Chom Chom restaurant to flats, comprising 10No one-bedroom dwellings comprising 7No one-bedroom/one-person and 3No one-bedroom/two-person flats.  According to the plans submitted, half of the flats appear to be below minimum space standards, with one of them just 32.2 sq m (347 sq ft).  Last week Chom Chom announce they had closed down.  We wait to see what takes its place.

 

Burnhill House, 50 Burnhill Road (Kelsey Square) 17/03675/FULL1

At the end of July last year Bromley Council granted ‘prior approval’ consent for the last remaining office building in the Beckenham High Street area to be converted into flats.  Burnhill House, situated adjacent to Lidl supermarket, was the subject of an application to convert the offices to 14No one and two-bedroom flats in 2015.  The council initially refused to grant consent, on the grounds that the proposal had inadequate provision for car parking, and would cause problems with highway safety on such a narrow section of the road.  An appeal by the applicant was dismissed, however a new application for the same scheme, but accompanied by a blank legal agreement promising the flats to be ‘car-free’ dwellings, was submitted and regrettably the Council capitulated and the application for the conversion of the office space to 14No flats was granted.

CCARA objected strongly against this application as, in our opinion, it provided an extremely poor standard of living accommodation, particularly in terms of space, privacy, noise, natural light and amenity.

Incredibly, earlier this year, the building owner made a fresh application for no less than 24No one-bedroom flats.  There were no drawings to show how ten more flats could be shoe-horned into the limited confines of the building, but thankfully the council refused the application.

This month, yet another application has been submitted, this time proposing an additional 9No new flats ‘bolted-on’ to the second floor and roof and substantial alterations of the existing building.  If granted permission, this would again bring the total number of flats the site to 24 (two existing flats on the first floor being retained and one flat originally proposed on the ground floor being sacrificed for bike and refuse storage) enabling up to 54 people to live there.

No car parking is provided (future residents will apparently not be allowed CPZ parking permits) and this will lead to pressure on nearby roads without parking restrictions.

We regard this latest proposal as an over-development of an already awkward building on a constrained site.  We’ve also noted there will be a marked disparity between the flats in the converted office space, which aren’t required to meet minimum national space standards, and the new flats which are.  Additionally, there is no requirement by the developer to provide affordable homes, as they are proposing nine new units (ten or more, and a proportion have to be ‘affordable’).  There is no requirement for any of the flats in the converted office space to be ‘affordable’.

If you would like to have a closer look and comment on this latest scheme, click on the link above.

 

Applications on the High Street:

 

218 High Street (old Ardec shop) 16/04171

Earlier this year, permission was granted at appeal for the change of use of the old Ardec shop to a restaurant on the ground floor with an extension to the rear (15/02489).

A further application for kitchen extract equipment and drainage proposals was granted consent this month.  Hoardings have since been erected, indicating that work has started inside.

 

210 High Street (old Clark’s shop) 16/04189/CUTA3

An application 16/05191/FULL1 submitted last November for the installation of a kitchen extraction hood external ducting to rear of the property was refused in March this year, on the grounds of insufficient information.

After an application 17/00050/LAPRE was made by the owners to vary and extend the current premises licence at Two-Ten, the establishment had its licence suspended on 26th April for three months.

The decision followed a number of apparent breaches of its existing licence since the restaurant opened in December last year.  The owners have been ordered to address several matters including noise, the sale of alcohol, building regulations, fire regulations, compliance with smoking laws and installation of a cctv system.

At the time of writing, there is currently also an enforcement enquiry underway regarding an alleged unauthorised change to a shop front together with the installation of a unauthorised canopy to the rear of the building.

 

206 High Street (old Chas Norman camera shop) 16/05707/FULL3

A retrospective application has been approved for the use of the first floor as a one-bedroom flat, and for shop front alterations including a roller shutter,new entrance to the flat above and shop window alterations.  The ground floor was  open for several months as an art gallery/shop, without any apparent name, before abruptly closing earlier this month.  We wait to see what takes its place

 

186A High Street (above Oliver Stephens Opticians) 17/00026/FULL1

An application to convert the existing three-bedroom duplex flat above the shop into 1No one-bedroom and 1No two-bedroom flats has been refused as the two dwellings would be lacking in adequate amenities and standard of accommodation for future occupants.

 

162 High Street 17/01568/ADV (old Horts Boutique shop)

The Council has taken enforcement action against Tech Check, the new occupier of the shop unit for changing a shop frontage and installing solid security shutters in a conservation area without planning permission.

The owners submitted a planning application in June, but made the alterations two weeks later, opening the shop at the end of the month.

 

 

12A High Street 17/00911/FULL1 (Coady’s Estate Agent)

Permission was granted in May for the change of use of the estate agents office on the railway bridge to a cafe.  At the time of writing, the cafe had not opened, but the its name, ‘Poached’ is shown on the window.

 

Beeches Court, 115-127 High Street (above Flower Studio) 17/01348/FULL

An application to reconfigure the 4No two-bedroom flats on the first and second floors to 8No one-bedroom flats was granted planning approval in May.

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Beckenham High Street Improvements Update 17th July 2107

Improvement Works Update, Monday 17th July, courtesy of F M Conway, contractor for the works:

Work for weeks commencing the 17th July 2017. 

·         At the corner of Church Avenue and High Street; kerb, drainage and traffic signals work will continue.

·         Kerb laying and paving continuing north from Church Avenue.

·         The construction of the new planters on Beckenham Green will continue.

In order to ensure the completion of Phase 2 on programme Conway’s will be working extended hours to 8pm and at the weekend.

For reference, in the week commencing the 24th July 2017 the paving adjacent the planters is anticipated to commence.

Previous completed works 

·         Footway excavation and sett laying between Belmont Dry Cleaners and The Dance Studio.

·         Construction of the parking bays between The Dance Studio and Lloyds Bank.

The completed scheme 

Feedback from the community has revealed that there are some incorrect preconceptions about the scheme :-

    • The asphalt at Thornton’s Corner is a temporary measure until the granite paving is laid.

    • The High Street will not be pedestrianised. Improvements will however greatly improve the pedestrian environment with wider pavements, improved lighting and more and better road crossings.

     • After the improvements are complete the High Street will revert to two way traffic as prior to the improvements. The larger widenings such as the North-West corner of Thornton’s Corner have been designed to enable the largest road vehicles to comfortably navigate the corner in both directions. Changes to the vehicle stop lines and traffic signalling will enable vehicles to use the reduced road space with minimal impacts on traffic flows.

   • No existing bus stops will be removed from the High Street. All bus stops will however be improved and will become fully disabled accessible. In order to create sufficient waiting space for passengers some bus stops will be located on what is the highway at present. 

    • The scheme will not introduce shared surfaces where the footway and road surface will be on the same level. Throughout the scheme a kerb will be retained and the pedestrian areas will be a traditional pavement above vehicular areas except at crossing places. 

Further information can be found at www.bromley.gov.uk/beckenhamimprovements

A Big Thank You 

Increasingly the project team and FM Conway have been receiving compliments about the improvements and the site contractors. Thank you for these. It is also much appreciated that businesses are working with and acknowledging that the site contractors of FM Conway are endeavouring to minimise disruption as much as possible.

We are aware that the works do cause noise and disruption. FM Conway will try and minimise the space for materials storage outside Beckenham Green as soon as possible. In the meantime thank you for your patience if you are affected.

About the scheme 

The scheme is designed to make the town more attractive to visitors and shoppers by day and night. A major objective is to support existing businesses and encourage new businesses to invest in the town centre. The High Street investment improvements will create a more attractive and safer pedestrian environment. Improvements will include new paving and road surfacing, improved and attractive lighting, improved road crossings and bus waiting facilities, better facilities for cyclists and improved amenity spaces including Beckenham Green.

Extensive planning and consultation has been carried out since the scheme was proposed in 2012. The cooperation and input of the ‘Town Centre Team’ and its members including the Beckenham Business Association, The Beckenham Society and the Copers Cope Area Residents’ Association is gratefully acknowledged, with their input key in shaping the nature of the scheme.

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Beckenham Perception of Safety Survey – 7 quick questions – please assist

Bromley Council , the Copers Cope Area Residents’ Association and the Beckenham Town Team are working to re-qualify Beckenham’s Purple Flag Award (find our more about Beckenham’s Purple Flag status below).

We need your help to understand perceptions of the night-time economy with in the Purple Flag area and feelings of safety. Most grateful if you can take the 2 minute survey below

Beckenham Purple Flag – Perceptions Survey

Beckenhams Purple Flag Story

In February 2014 the Beckenham Town Centre Team (chaired by the Copers Cope Area Residents Association) decided Beckenham should try to achieve the Purple Flag award: the evening economy was often a source of complaint for local people, and the Purple Flag is a great way to make improvements and change perceptions.

The Purple Flag is awarded by the Association of Town Centre Management (ATCM) to towns and cities that can demonstrate excellence in managing their night-time economy. Similar to the Blue Flag for great beaches and the Green Flag for great parks, the Purple Flag is for towns with diverse and safe evening and night-time economies.

Over the following 12 months a small steering group involving Bromley Council Trading Standards, Bromley Council Licensing, Beckenham Business Association, West Beckenham Residents’ Association, Churches Together, Street Pastors, a representative from Beckenham’s licensed premises and, of course, the Copers Cope Area Residents’ Association worked together to make this idea a reality.

In January 2016 Beckenham was awarded the Purple Flag, and at the time was one of only 42 places in the country to have been awarded it. What impressed the awarding body most was the input and collaboration from the two residents’ associations representing local people. The ATCM was so impressed it has asked for Beckenham to be used as a case study to demonstrate the importance of resident groups in town centre management. Beckenham is the first town to be awarded the flag as a result of joint efforts from residents, businesses, and the Council – usually applications are driven by the council or businesses.

The ATCM were also impressed by the diverse offering of Beckenham’s evening economy. They especially liked the programme of events at St Georges Church, the mix of old pubs and new bars and the variety of restaurants. The Alleyway Naming Project  (delivered by the Copers Cope Area Residents Association with much support from the Town Centre Team) was another area that sparked their interest and demonstrated a local interest in heritage and the plan to make these alleyways attractive and safer, especially at night.

So what did it take to get the flag?

There were many walk-arounds by volunteers from 5pm to 1 or 2am to assess how well the town centre coped with increased clientele at the weekend in the restaurants and bars. Local people and some patrons, door personnel, and bar/restaurant staff were surveyed for their views on Beckenham’s night-time economy. The key areas of concern included:

  • Dispersing crowds on Friday and Saturday nights – noise and potential for anti-social behaviour.
  • Queues for taxis, and the Kebab shop queues after the clubs had shut.
  • Radio and CCTV capacity to ensure the police and licensed premises could deal with any anti-social behaviour quickly and efficiently.
  • Street cleaning of the town centre through the weekend evenings to ensure the town remained pleasant for all.

As part of the application for the Purple Flag the following was achieved:

  • The radio system was upgraded and all licensed premises signed up ensuring licensed premises and the Police could remain in contact throughout the night.
  • A taxi queuing system was introduced by New Regency Cars to streamline the queues for taxis on Friday and Saturday nights.
  • Taxi marshalls have been deployed at Regency cars and at the taxi rank outside Marks & Spencer.
  • Door staff have been retrained to spot and aid vulnerable people leaving the clubs (eg those who have had too much to drink).
  • The Kebab shop on The Bridge now employs a door-person on Friday and Saturday nights to keep order.
  • The location of CCTV was reviewed to ensure the views were maximized.
  • Wellbeing packs were provided to all late night establishments to ensure they had the minimum kit to deal with revellers who had over indulged.

The most telling sign of success was last Christmas when the number of incidents related to late night drinking fell significantly in Beckenham whilst the rest of the borough saw an increase.

Purple Flag status lasts for two years and the town will need to maintain and hopefully improve standards in order to re-qualify.

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Beckenham Improvement Work Update 3rd April 2017

Improvement Works Update, Monday 3rd April, courtesy of F M Conway, contractor for the works:

 

Beckenham Improvements work update

Work for the week ahead 

Work on the raised footway between the Nat West and the steps will be completed.

Customers requiring the ATM will have to access this via the steps on the lower section of the High Street.

Works underway outside Kinleigh Estate Agents will be completed by early next week together with the work on the opposite corner adjacent to Beckenham Green. All barriers will be removed at both of these points by early next week.

Work will continue along the section of the High Street between Albemarle Rd and Bromley Rd but will temporarily stop just short of the Church Entrance in preparation for Easter celebrations.

Work to replace the pedestrian refuges at the junction of Rectory Road and High Street will commence as part of the upgrade work, in preparation for resurfacing the road at the end of April.

Work on the lower section of the High Street below the steps next to Coppers will start week beginning 10/4 but residents and retailers affected will be notified in advance to discuss access requirements to the shops and private car park entrances and potential alternative arrangements.

Second week update report

Beckenham Junction works have proceeded in line with expectations. Paving and kerbing work is now almost complete.

The High Street arm of the junction has now been adjusted bringing the approach to the traffic lights back to two lanes, with the traffic light re-sequenced. Traffic queuing has generally been reduced and traffic continues to be able to turn right into Southend Road from Albemarle Road. Work on the Thai Restaurant Corner and around into Rectory Rd has been completed and all barriers have been removed. Work on the raised footway between Coppers Restaurant and the Spa have been completed and the steps reopened.

About the scheme

The scheme is designed to make the town more attractive to visitors and shoppers by day and night. A major objective is to support existing businesses and encourage new businesses to invest in the town centre. The High Street investment improvements will create a more attractive and safer pedestrian environment. Improvements will include new paving and road surfacing, improved and attractive lighting, improved road crossings and bus waiting facilities, better facilities for cyclists and improved amenity spaces including Beckenham Green.

Extensive planning and consultation has been carried out since the scheme was proposed in 2012. The cooperation and input of the Beckenham Business Association and the Copers Cope Resident Association is gratefully acknowledged, with their input key in shaping the nature of the scheme.

Sign up for regular newsletter updates

Businesses and interested residents who want to follow the progress of the work over the next 18 months can sign up for the regular updates that will be sent. Visit www.bromley.gov.uk/beckenhamimprovements to do this where the latest detailed traffic diversions are listed including information about bus routes and a link to TfL’s website www.tfl.gov.uk/BusChanges.

Thank you for your understanding and support

Every effort is being made to minimise disruption and your understanding and support is appreciated in advance if there are unforeseen issues which need to be resolved. If further specific information is needed, please contact Conway’s Helen McConnell who can be contacted, for help and advice. Helen, the Liaison Officer is the scheme contact for businesses and residents. Helen can be contacted on Mobile Tel 07917 518 529 or email Beckenham@fmconway.co.uk if needed.

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PLANNING and DEVELOPMENT Bulletin 04 – September 2016

 

This is the latest of our regular bi-monthly updates on planning and development in the Copers Cope area.  Our aim is to provide you with a concise and informative snapshot of recent planning applications, decisions and appeals.

 

Refusal of a Major Residential Development on Worsley Bridge Road 

The large-scale residential development planned behind the Dylon site, near to Lower Sydenham Railway Station at the northern end of Worsley Bridge Road, has been dismissed at appeal.

The site, presently occupied by Footsies Social Club and playing fields, is on a wedge of open land situated between the New Beckenham / Lower Sydenham rail line and the Pool River, and is next to the old Dylon site where 220 flats are currently under construction.

In February last year an application (15/00701/FULL1) was made to demolish the existing single-storey buildings on the edge of the Footsies site and construct a building of varying height, from eight to twelve storeys, to provide 296 residential units, a new estate road, parking and cycling spaces and landscaping of land to be accessible by the public.  The scheme comprised of 148No. one-bedroom, 135No. two-bedroom and 13No. three-bedroom flats.  In September last year the application was refused and became the subject of an appeal, which was later withdrawn.

A second application, for a slight variant of the above scheme, but with 253 dwellings, had also been lodged by the developer (15/04759/FULL1). This, too, was refused and the applicant subsequently appealed against the decision.

The appeal hearing was finally held over several days in May and the Planning Inspectorate released its decision last month to dismiss it.

The principal reasons for the dismissal are the effect the proposal would have on:

  1. The area of Metropolitan Open Land (MOL) on which it sited;
  2. The effect on the character and appearance of the surrounding area, in terms of the design, scale, density and risk of flooding;
  3. The amenities of occupiers of the future dwellings in terms of natural ventilation, solar gain and noise.

Click here to read the Planning Inspector’s Report

Beck House, 36A Copers Cope Road 16/02136/FULL1

Permission has been granted to construct a new, four-storey rear extension and an additional storey on top of the existing block of flats to create an additional 8No. two-bedroom and 1No. three-bedroom flats in connection with the existing 4No. two-bedroom and 1No. three bedroom flats which will be remodelled.

87A Bromley Road 16/02120/FULL1

Consent has also been given to demolish the existing two-storey house situated on the triangular plot of land between Bromley Road and Albermarle Road, close to Bishop Challoner School, and replace it with a part-three, part-four-storey block comprising 9No. two-bedroom flats.

Conifer House, 44 Southend Road 16/02179/FULL1

Planning permission has been granted to enlarge and refurbish this empty, three-storey block of flats on Southend Road, opposite the Stumps Hill Lane bus stop.  This includes  building an additional storey plus four-storey front and rear extensions to create 8No. flats in addition to the 10No. existing.  The new additions will comprise 1No. one-bedroom, 4No. two-bedroom and 3No. three-bedroom flats.  The existing 2No. one-bedroom, 6No. two-bedroom and 2No. three-bedroom flats will also be remodelled.

213 Kings Hall Road 15/04458/OUT

Last year, two outline planning applications were made to develop the land to the rear of 213 Kings Hall Road including part of the side garden of 215.  The initial proposal was for 5No. detached four/five-bedroom houses and gardens.  This was refused by the Council on the grounds of overdevelopment of the site.  Later in the year, a second application was made reducing the number of houses to 3No. however this was subsequently refused also, for the same reason.  The applicant has since lodged an appeal against the latest decision.  At the time of writing a date for the appeal hearing had yet to published.

3 Beckenham Road (above Barclays Bank) 16/02218/FULL1

Planning permission has been refused for a scheme involving the addition of three residential storeys on top of the existing, two-storey Barclays Bank building opposite the cinema.

The development comprised of 2No. one-bedroom and 6No. two-bedroom flats on the third and fourth floors, and a large, three-bedroom penthouse on the fifth floor.

The reasons given for refusal were that the proposal would be visually obtrusive, due to its design, scale, bulk and height; would detract from views in and out of the area; and would be detrimental to the character of the adjacent High Street Conservation Area.

20 Crescent Road 16/02752/FULL

An application to demolish a large 1890s Victorian villa house on a prominent corner near Chancery Lane and replace it with flats has fortunately been refused consent.  There was passionate opposition to the application by local residents, the Chancery Lane and Limes Road Residents’ Association and CCARA, with many letters of objection and a petition being sent to the Council.

10 Copers Cope Road 16/02834/FULL

A retrospective planning application for a basement and ground floor dwelling, that has already been built in the rear garden, has been refused permission.

No 10 is described as a four-storey, end-of-terrace hotel building that has been extensively  refurbished.  Last year the owner was granted permission to build a structure in the rear garden to provide additional facilities for the hotel, including a laundry, fitness room, staff room, office, toilets and storage.

The building has since been repurposed to become a three-bedroom dwelling, without permission.  The building has also been found to be larger than the original consent allowed, and includes a second lightwell that wasn’t on the consented drawings.

Enforcement action is now being taken by LBB in addition to the refusal of the retrospective application.

Carlton Court, Beckenham Road 16/03105/FULL

A planning application has been submitted to add another storey to the two-storey flats, situated at the junction with Hayne Road, to provide 2No two-bed and 2No one-bed flats.

 

CHANGE OF USE FROM COMMERCIAL TO RESIDENTIAL

Three years ago, the Government relaxed the planning laws to make it very easy to convert office premises to residential use.  Over this period, the majority of office space on Beckenham High Street, much of which was fully-let and in demand, has been given approval to be converted to flats.

The largest of these include St Brides’s House, now practically complete, Marqueen House, Ironstone House and Provident House on Burrell Row, and Kelsey House at Thornton’s Corner (recently subject of a second application, see below). As a result, many thousands of square feet of purpose-built office space have been lost and cannot be reclaimed.

Burnhill House, 50 Burnhill Road 16/02466/RESPA

At the end of July Bromley Council granted ‘prior approval’ consent for the last remaining large office building on Beckenham High Street to be converted into flats.

50 Burnhill Road, had been the subject of an application to convert the building, situated adjacent to Lidl supermarket, into flats last year.  The council initially refused to grant consent, on the grounds that the proposal had inadequate provision for car parking, and would cause problems with highway safety on such a narrow section of the road.  An appeal by the applicant was dismissed earlier this year, however a new application for the same scheme, but accompanied by a blank legal agreement promising the flats to be ‘car-free’ dwellings, was submitted in May and regrettably the Council capitulated.

CCARA objected strongly against this application as, in our opinion, it provides an extremely poor and cramped standard of living accommodation. Other areas of concern are what appear to be multiple entrances to the development, no provision for refuse storage and an impractical proposal to store 14 bicycles in the Burnhill Road entrance lobby.  It will be interesting to observe whether this ‘car-free’ agreement, implemented by other developers of commercial-to-residential buildings in Beckenham, will work in reality particularly as Bromley has the the third highest number of car owners out of all the boroughs of Greater London.

Kelsey House, 77 High Street 16/02649/RESPA

Prior approval has been refused for an application to convert the four storeys of office space above the Kelsey House Bar & Kitchen to twenty flats, comprising of 8No. one-bedroom and 12No. two-bedroom (3 person) dwellings.  Reasons given for refusal were the lack of an environmental noise assessment and that future occupiers of the dwellings could be negatively affected by noise from the Bar & Kitchen on the ground floor and other neighbouring commercial premises.  The building is also in a medium flood risk zone and no flood risk assessment had been submitted with the application.

Last summer, a prior approval application had been granted for sixteen flats.

The freehold building is currently on the market for £4 million.

171a High Street 16/02021/RESPA

Following refusal earlier this year, Prior Approval has now been granted to convert the commercial space above Beckenham Pharmacy to 1No two-bedroom flat.

9 Kelsey Park Road 16/02126/RESPA

Prior Approval has been given to convert the two floors of office space above Grand Cru Co wine merchants to 1No three-bedroom flat and 1No two-bedroom flat.

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Beautiful Guerilla Gardening in The Avenue Beckenham – well done whoever you are :-)

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by | 12/05/2016 · 21:07

Beckenham Place Park proposals get stage 1 approval – local public consultation dates in Beckenham.

Lewisham Council has secured a Round 1 pass from the Heritage Lottery Fund’s (HLF) Parks for People programme.  The Mayor of London has approved the HLF bid and the public golf course will close at some point.

Draft proposals for the restoration and regeneration of the park and buildings have been developed and The Council would like to hear your views about these plans. The comments received will be used to inform the next stages of planning the project.

The plans will be available at a series of exhibitions and events over the coming weeks. The events will be staffed by members of the project team who will be on hand to explain the proposals and to answer any questions you may have.

The programme of exhibitions is shown below.

  • Saturday 5 March 2016, 11.00 am – 3.00 pm, Sainsburys forecourt Beckenham High Street, Beckenham 
  • Wednesday 9 March 2016, 1.00 pm – 6.00 pm, 14 -15 Catford Broadway (Opposite Costa Coffee), Catford
  • Sunday 13 March 2016, 2.00 pm – 4.00 pm, Beckenham Place Park Mansion House Visitor Centre.
  • Monday 14 March 2016, 9.00 am – 11.30 am, The Green Man, 355 Bromley Road.
  • Monday 14 March 2016, 12 noon – 4.00 pm, Bellingham High Street (Shop next to the Post Office),14 Randlesdown Road.
  • Thursday 17 March 2016, 3.00 pm – 5.00 pm and; 7.00 pm – 8.30 pm, Evangelical Church Hall, Cromwell Road, Beckenham.
  • Monday 21 March 2016, 6.00 pm – 9.00 pm,The Green Man,355 Bromley Road.
  • Saturday 26 March 2016, 11.00 am – 3.00 pm, Beckenham Place Park Mansion.

These exhibitions are being run as drop in sessions, with the same plans and surveys available at each session. You do not need to confirm your attendance and these sessions are all open to the public. Therefore please pick a date, time and venue that is most convenient for you.

Further public consultation will be carried out later in Summer 2016 prior to the submission of the final proposals to the Heritage Lottery Fund.

Enquiries about the project should be directed to  Alison Taylor, Project Manager, Lewisham Council by email bpp@lewisham.gov.uk or on 0208 314 8758.

 

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Bromley Council choose not to register Elmers End Green as a Town Green

Earlier this year the West Beckenham Residents’ Association (WBRA) lodged an application to have Elmers End Green registered as a Town or Village Green. Bromley Council had previously attempted to sell the freehold for the toilet block on the Green (this is now currently being sold by leasehold). This raised concern, and local people wanted to ensure Elmers End Green was a protected green space. At our AGM, Copers Cope Area Residents’ Association members agreed to support WBRA’s application and our Association wrote in support to the Council and our local councillor on the committee. Unfortunately the Council voted against registering Elmers End Green as a Town or Village Green.  An application has been lodged by The Beckenham Society to register Beckenham Green we hope the Council will approve this application.  The Council can choose to register both sites voluntarily. If you think the Council should register these sites voluntarily please complete our poll at the bottom of this blog.

West Beckenham Residents’ Association released the following statement:

WBRA are very disappointed that the Council’s Executive Committee rejected the opportunity to register Elmers End Green as a Town or Village Green. The proposal was based on the special history of Elmers End Green. This triangle of land has been in exactly the same place at the junction of the road between Beckenham and Croydon and that to West Wickham for at least 300 years – undeveloped and open space used by residents of the then small Elmers End hamlet right up to the present day. If this doesn’t qualify as a town green, we don’t know what will. Dozens of local people wrote to the Leader of the Council in support of the proposition, as did eminent local groups such as Copers Cope Area Residents’ Association, Elmers End Free Church, The Beckenham Society and Bromley Local History Society. All councillors for Clock House and Kelsey and Eden Park wards supported our proposal.

The Development Control Committee had, in July, recognised the value of local history in fostering community spirit – at no cost. They felt registration would show the Borough in its best “Clean and Green” form and were enthusiastic for registration. Here was a committee that actually listened to what we were saying! On 10 September, Councillor Alan Collins gave a spirited and eloquent exposition of the case in favour. The Executive Committee however dismissed the Development Control Committee’s recommendation for registration without a shred of empathy for local people. Instead they just dismissed the dozens of emails and letters supporting the proposal and dragged up excuses to do nothing.

WBRA could understand (just a little) if we were asking them to spend thousands on the Green, but registration would cost virtually nothing. It is very depressing when our elected representatives show such little regard for the wishes of the electorate.

 

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Consultation: Conservation Area for Beckenham Town Centre

At the Council run Beckenham Town Centre Working Group that the Copers Cope Area Residents’ Association attends with other local community organisations it was agreed to progress the idea of creating a conservation area running the length of the whole Town Centre.  Currently there is a small conservation area at Kelsey Square and a larger one covering St George’s Church, Beckenham Green and Bromley Road School. By extending the conservation area and linking both existing ones Beckenham will be able to preserve and enhance the High Street buildings and ensure that new shop fronts are in keeping.  Our Association is in support of this proposal that will see, over time, our beautiful Art Deco parade restored to its former glory and the design of shop fronts more sympathetic to the age of the buildings through out out the town.

The Council have now prepared the long awaited proposal to create a Beckenham Town Centre Conservation Area. Local people are encouraged to comment on the proposal.  The deadline for feedback is 24 October 2014. If you would like to comment on this proposal, please download the questionnaire, complete and either email it to conservation@bromley.gov.uk or post it to Bromley Council, Room P41, Civic Centre , Stockwell Close BR1 3UH.

Further information about the proposed conservationConservation_area area can be found at the links below:

Beckenham Conservation Area

Beckenham Town Centre Character Assessment

 

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Harris Beckenham discussed in Parliament

The debacle of the new primary school to be located at Harris Beckenham Academy off Manor Way that issued school places and was refused planning permission earlier this year was discussed in Parliament on 12 Sep 2014. You can read the transcript below:

Bromley School Places

 

 

 

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Beckenham Green Friends spruce up some unloved spots

Our Beckenham Green Friends Group has been busy planting and weeding some unloved spots in the town.  The forlorn round bed on Beckenham Green is now vibrant with colour. The unsightly patch by the Waitrose sign has been planted with some flowers and hardy shrubs we hope will grow strong and tall (to disguise all the litter and cigarette butts dropped in that area).

If you have any free time to help, or some plants to spare, please contact Copers Cope Area Residents’ Association – email: chairman@coperscope.org.uk

green waitrose

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Flood storage to be built in Beckenham Place Park

A consultation is underway on plans to build a large flood storage reservoir in Beckenham Place Park. If built it will have a dramatic effect on the park.

Further information can be found on Lewisham Council’s website at:

Lewisham and Catford Flood Alleviation Scheme

Beckenham residents that use the park may wish to comment on the consultation. The Environment Agency is holding events to get feedback to help shape the final scheme. The events will be held on:

  • Friday 4 July, 10am to 3pm, Lewisham Shopping Centre
  • Thursday 17 July, 10:30am to 1pm, Catford Civic Suite
  • Thursday 17 July, 1:30pm to 3pm , the market on Catford Broadway
  • Saturday 26 July, 10am to 2:30pm, Ravensbourne Community Centre

Alternatively, if you can’t attend on these days but would like more information about the project, you can contact Richard Peddie at the Environment Agency on 01252 729541 or email pso.selondon&nkent@environment-agency.gov.uk.

 

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New sensory garden opens in Beckenham Place Park

The garden is a space for users to escape the hustle and bustle of urban life in a corner of the park that has been transformed to stimulate all five senses – sight, sound, smell, taste and touch.  It includes features, designed to attract wildlife and create sound including bird baths and feeders, as well as textured floors and raised beds.

The garden has been created for the entire community and includes seating areas, a disability ramp, a wheelchair friendly picnic bench and wheelchair accessible footpaths. A trip to the garden will enhance the physical and emotional well-being of all visitors and residents with a disability, such as dementia or a visual impairment, will be able to enjoy nature in a safe and tactile environment.

 

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Small electrical recycling bank set up in Beckenham

SMALL electrical items can now be recycled at six new recycling banks which have been set up across Bromley. Beckenham has one in Tescos car park at Elmers End.

Any small electrical with a battery or a plug can be recycled, plus batteries and low energy lightbulbs.

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