Several news items have come to light recently that will have an impact on the life in SE16. We thought this might be a good time to update everyone on what’s going on in the planning world around Canada Water, Surrey Docks, Bermondsey and Rotherhithe.

  • Super Sewer Challenge
  • The Ship York
  • Southwark Athletic Centre
  • Hilton Hotel site
  • Project Light

King Edward Memorial Park in the rain, Shadwell, London by O.F.E CC FlickrSuper Sewer Challenge

You may have noticed that the government decided on 12 September 2014 to confirm the plans of Thames Water to build a huge sewer under the Thames passing SE16, known as the Thames Tideway Tunnel. The 25km Tunnel will take seven years to build starting in 2016 and will have a particular impact on our community due to Thames Water’s plan to locate a construction site at Chambers Wharf SE16. The campaign to stop this intrusive and dangerous use of the site has been persistent and well-supported but the Government’s decision seemed a final word in the matter. That was until 30 October when the London Borough of Southwark announced it had asked the High Court to require a Judicial Review of the Government’s decision to give the scheme the go ahead. Read more here.

Ship York, Rotherhithe SE16 by Ewan Munro CC FlickrThe Ship York

Planning permission for the demolition of this fine old three-storey 1930s pub was granted in April 2014 (13/AP/3839). The plans show that the new owners intend to build a five-storey development in its place – a bar on the ground floor (and basement) and above eight two-bed flats. Dussel and Lorraine Charalambous have run the Ship York since 1997 but have been losing money for some time and have now decided to call time. Mounting costs and a slowdown in trade has driven them to the decision to sell up. With the pressure for new developments locally and rising property prices, many local pubs are under threat of a similar future. Good piece in Southwark News here.

Southwark Athletics Centre

At the southern end of Southwark Park near Hawkstone Road the Southwark Park Sports Centre has been in one state of dereliction or another for some years. Aside from the gym, the floodlights were used to great effect to light the way for the crowds at the Fireworks Night on 5 November. In September, planning permission (14/AP/2455) was granted for the complex to be brought back to life. The plans show renewed athletics facilities for javelin, hammer, shot-put, long-jump / triple-jump, high jump and pole vault as well as steeplechase, 8-lane straight and 6-lane 400m track events. In the centre will be a real grass pitch usable for several team sports. The Council has allocated £2.63M for the reinstatement of the athletics facilities.

110719_London_0057 by Herve Boinay CC FlickrHilton Hotel site

In April 2014, the Hilton London Docklands Riverside was purchased by H.I.G. Bayside Capital on behalf of hotel group Pandox AB.It was their entry into the London hotel market and the result has been two planning applications, one relating to the fine listed Georgian Master builder’s residence of 1754 (14/AP/2335-6) and the other seeking to change the use of the fitness centre and staff accommodation to become 7 new homes (14/AP/3540). The plans indicate that the Thames Path will be reinstated along the riverside, the Nelson Dock museum will be refurbished and the gym partly relocated with the owner’s help to the Pumphouse by Lavender Pond. Neither application has been decided and the consultation period for the second runs to 22 November 2014.

Project Light

The long awaited arrival of contractors on the Decathlon and What! Store site has now happened.  MadiganGill have constructed a temporary two-storey self-contained office block on the carpark of the What! Store due to be completed by 17 November 2014. This is the accommodation for the telesales and HQ staff of Decathlon UK who will move into it from the first of their two stores – the one nearest Albion Channel – up to Christmas. At the same time, Decathlon UK have applied to extend their second store into their own carpark alongside Canada Water. This extension will allow the transfer of their whole retail business from the first to the second buildings during the early part of 2015, leaving the building empty. By March 2015, Sellars – the developer for the whole site – expect to be able to start the demolition of the first Decathlon shop. Oh and the whole development is now dubbed Project Light!

If you want to know more about these and other planning issues, make your way to the regular meetings of the Canada Water Consultative Forum which meets at the Alfred Salter Primary School