Electric Vehicle Charging Points
Following on from our article in the last Journal about the lack of action in installing electrical charging points in local streets, the government recently announced that it would shortly be a requirement for all new residential development to include charging points for every unit. Southwark’s Labour Party manifesto also sets out a commitment to encourage installation of street charging points - though they appear to think that the answer lies in putting them on lamp posts rather than specific purpose built charging posts.
We asked for members thoughts on this and had two responses, both charged their cars themselves in their off-street parking areas, but reiterated concerns over the lack of street charging spaces elsewhere - the electric cars were generally only used for short journeys, with one owner using a zipcar for longer journeys.
As we said before, if the long-term aim is to facilitate the ownership of electric cars, then action needs to be taken as soon as possible.
Proposed Development in the Former Rear Garden of Lyndenhurst, Red Post Hill
Following on from the ‘sold’ sign recently seen on the boundary wall a planning application has now been made to build three houses in this former garden along Red Post Hill. An earlier application some years ago was turned down by the Council and confirmed on appeal. The Society objected as did many neighbours.
Nothing has changed and the majority of local residents remain strongly opposed to any plans for this site which has never been built on and has become a haven for trees and wildlife. There is also the question of access, currently a four feet wide gate which opens on to a narrow pavement by the bus stop opposite North Dulwich Station. The applicants have said that they intend to leave the access as it is and that purchasers will either not have cars or park their cars in surrounding streets - but there is the question of how the scheme is actually built if there is no other way in. The Dulwich Village Conservation Area Appraisal says that ‘Lyndenhurst's large rear garden has not been developed, although half of it has been separated off. This garden setting positively enhances the listed building. It is important for the proper preservation of the character of the conservation area that the open setting is preserved, and that both parts of the former garden remain undeveloped’. Who can disagree?
Street Closure to Ease Air Pollution near Schools
Responding to concerns at Bessemer Grange Primary School about air pollution and child safety, Southwark Council has agreed to the trial closing of Nairn Grove, the road in front of the School, to motor vehicles during school drop off and pick up times - 8.00-9.15am and 14.40-15.45. The closure will be implemented using physical barriers and will start on 10th September and run though until the end of the Autumn term, a total of 14 weeks. Closure will not be enforced during weekends and school holidays.
An essential part of the exercise will be to carry out a monitoring test programme to confirm that air pollution levels are reduced. As well as improving road safety and reducing air pollution, the school and the council believe that this experiment will encourage parents and children to travel to and from school in a more sustainable way - by walking or cycling.
Nairn Grove lends itself relatively easily to such an experiment as it is not a major road, implementing a similar proposal in Dulwich village for example, would be far more difficult and contentious. But there has been a lot of talk on what to do about air pollution and it is good to see the Council taking some action.
Funds for local projects
The Dulwich Society’s aim is to maintain and foster the amenities of Dulwich in the interests of its residents and the wider community of which Dulwich is part, and to increase awareness of the varied character that makes the area so special. Our financial resources currently allow us to consider grants to projects that meet this objective.
Grants have been made in recent years for a wide range of projects, including for removal of cherry laurel and for labelling trees in Dulwich Park (both in association with Dulwich Park Friends), support for London Wildlife Trust’s Great North Wood project, digitising the historic court rolls and estate maps held in the Dulwich College archives, providing conference fees for the local Safer Routes to Schools initiative, an interactive white board for St Barnabas Parish Hall, a green anti-pollution screen at Goose Green Primary School and funding the poetry event at the recent Dulwich Festival. The most recent was the Society’s donation to the new World Gallery at the Horniman Museum,
Funds for permanent physical improvements may be available from Southwark Council under its Cleaner Greener Safer initiative, which has funded many local projects - see www.southwark.gov.uk .
Visit to Southwark’s Integrated Waste Management Facility, 11am on Friday 19th October
Have you ever wondered happens to the contents of your bins when they are emptied? Join us on a tour of Southwark’s Integrated Waste Management Facility and you will see!
Operated by Veolia, the facility is one of the most advanced in Europe, processing waste from across Southwark. The Materials Recovery Facility uses a combination of mechanical and manual processes to sort waste collected for recycling (your blue bin) into its components for onward processing, and the Mechanical Biological Treatment Facility extracts recyclable materials from “black / green bin” waste and creates fuel from its organic components for a nearby Energy Recovery Facility that heats 10,000 local homes.
We will meet at Southwark IWMF, 43 Devon Road, London SE15 1AL (off the Old Kent Road; it’s also the site of the Southwark Reuse & Recycling Centre). Our visit will last up to two hours. A full health & safety briefing will be given at the start and personal protection equipment will be provided. Please note that strong magnets and eddy currents are used on site so that members with pacemakers should not attend. There is no wheelchair or disabled access, and high heels, open toed shoes, photography and the use of mobiles are not allowed on site.
The 53, 172 and 453 buses from Elephant & Castle stop at Commercial Way, a two-minute walk from the IWMF site, and Queens Road Station, Peckham is a 15-minute walk. No parking will be available on site.
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