Present: Members: Anne Orange (Chair), James Slattery-Kavanagh, Joe Ward, Bernie Bullbrook, Simon Berlyn, Richard Moore, Helen O'Brien, Jeff Avis, Rod Brown, C Wills
Apologies: Jane Pickard, Gerald and Daphne Slaughter, Michael and Gabrielle Garton-Grimwood, Graham Fearon-Wilson, Pat Fisher, Cllr Robert McConnell, Cllr Gerry Evans, Cllr Baker, Cllr Janet Grigg
Minutes of the last meeting, matters arising
St Julian's Farm Road Playing Fields - Simon Berlyn noted that he had said that it was unfortunate that the decision to reject the scheme had not gone to the Planning Committee. He had said that it was unfortunate that Cllr Evans had not helped matters before the decision was taken by parading indicative plans to the Planning Subgroup of the Partnership Board.
James Slattery-Kavanagh noted that the minutes were of the NAG Meeting held on 14th October, not 12th October.
JSK also noted that re St Luke's Gardens the correct spelling was Pamela Tyrrell. Anne Orange re-stated that the £500 grant application was indeed for funding of an architect for the St Luke's gardens scheme.
Constitution - Joe Ward noted that Streatham Society was no longer a member of the Civic Trust, finding the subscription too expensive. James Slattery-Kavanagh had also extended an invitation to the Dulwich Society to speak at a forthcoming NAG meeting.
Bernie Bullbrook asked how the Yellow Storage Company had avoided building a leisure complex on its site, instead opting for a car showroom. He asked how this situation had arisen and asked if NAG should voice its concern. Richard Moore explained that the leisure complex formed Yellow Box's 106 agreement. The Council had made a mistake and he suggested that Cllr Baker be asked to provide further detail. Anne Orange agreed to write to Cllr Baker asking his opinion on the situation and what his solution would be.
Roads and Transport
This item was raised to determine what NAG's next focus should be. In the past the Group had focused on the East-West bus link and on increasing the Thameslink from 4 to 5 trains per hour during the rush hour.
Richard Moore noted that Tulse Hill was acknowledged as a transport hub in the UDP. He asked how this affected transport companies eg bus operators.
Rod Brown noted that the East London Line decision was still up in the air, although the Strategic Rail Authority had said it preferred the Clapham route to the Tulse Hill/Wimbledon route.
Anne Orange suggested writing to the Strategic Rail Authority to find out the progress of the Thameslink 2000 project. Why were they saying that an E London Line service to Wimbledon (were it to go ahead) would replace Thameslink trains? AO and RB agreed to draft a letter to the SRA re the Thameslink and Tulse Hill.
Simon Berlyn noted that the Group would need to know what the transport hub would entail eg increased bus numbers in Tulse Hill. He felt that conservation was needed at Tulse Hill, not extra development.
RM noted that the transport hub issue had been omitted from the draft UDP due to an administrative error. It was now too late to submit an objection to the UDP on conservation grounds.
SB felt that there was a need to reduce traffic on Norwood Road.
RM wondered it there was a possibility of extending the trams to Norwood. RB noted that the plan had originally been to extend the trams to Stockwell and that Councillors had wanted a Brixton and Streatham extension. Transport for London maintained that some bridges were too low to take trams and RB noted that the Board had not focused on trams.
Bernie Bullbrook noted the diversion of the 315 bus route and felt that the sleepers and blocks narrowing the Landsdown Road bridge to one lane only were dangerously positioned.
St Luke's Gardens Update
Simon Berlyn noted that Luke Wickings had been invited to attend the NAG December meeting. He noted that there had been despondency at the last Steering Group meeting. Luke Wickings was to raise with the PCC, Pamela Tyrrell with the Church and SB with NAG the possibility of a local fundraising exercise to go towards an architect and a preliminary scheme. A fundraising team would need to be launched. He also noted that any persons volunteering help could count towards match funding and could be costed at a professional rate. He suggested that volunteers should complete timesheets and log work done.
JSK noted that he had still not had a clear vision about the project. He personally would not hand over any money until he could see some ideas of the project. AO reminded him that the fundraising would be for an architect to resolve some of these issues.
RB felt that NAG needed minutes of the St Luke's Steering Group minutes for its files. Anne Orange stated that these were not public meetings, rather meetings of a working group of the steering committee. She also questioned the £10,000 architect's fee. Joe Ward asked how six figure funding for the scheme could be raised if an architect cost £5,000. Richard Moore noted that minimal or no fee single sketch vision documents could be obtained. JSK said that whereas free tendering had been popular in the past, architects often turn this option down. Anne Orange said that there was scope for building on things already in place. Simon Berlyn appreciated that there were some obstacles to progress. JSK noted that designs had already been drawn up.
At this point, JSK left the meeting and shortly afterwards SB left, having a further meeting to attend.
The discussion on St Luke's continued. Those remaining agreed that it was time to have another election for St Luke's steering group members, the last one being more than a year ago, and requested it go on the next agenda.
AO noted that Jane Pickard wanted a January Newsletter. Cash was available but a Community Chest funding application would also be needed. RM said he had Quark Xpress if required. RB suggested including a survey - what issues would locals like NAG to take on board. AO cautioned that this would lead to a very high workload. It was suggested that the purchase of a tree for Norwood Park could be publicised.
Any Other Business
Anne Orange advised the Group that she had given a cheque to the Friends of Norwood Park for the purchase of a Judas Tree. The cost of £81 included the tree, a plaque and VAT. The trees would be cared for by South London Botanical Institute of Norwood Road, who had advised on the suitability of a range of unusual tree specimens.
Bernie Bulbrook noted that the launch of the No Credits video (subject: mobile phone theft) had been launched at the Brixton Academy. Local children had acted the parts and it would be distributed to schools.
BB noted that police overtime had been banned borough wide. It was likely that almost all ward officers would be lost during the visit of President Bush. Also, although police numbers were stable at present, experienced officers were moving out of inner London. This was compounded by the policy of moving experienced officers out of borough policing to enable other officers to gain experience.
Richard Moore advised the Group that over a 10 year period published figures showed that 87% of sucessful grants in the borough were outside the Norwood area. This underinvestment gave NAG a case to campaign for more funds for the area. He suggested that Council officers had not applied for grants that Norwood could have obtained. NAG could put pressure on the Area Committee as decision-maker to lobby for grants for Norwood. RM proposed that NAG obtain paperwork pertaining to Area Committee meetings and ideally NAG should have a representative on the Area Committee. AO suggested that a NAG member attend the next Area Committee and ask what it was going to do to access funding and redress the lack of past funding. NAG should identify areas needing funding and ask the Area Committee to apply for funding. (Perhaps this could be broadcast through the Newsletter).
Elmcourt Road Secondary School proposal. There was debate in the meeting. The school was necessary and the area had good transport links with Tulse Hill railway station and the various buses but traffic was an issue (especially the South Circular). It was thought that a secondary school would not generate much traffic, but it was suggested that the school might be used as an excuse to implement a CPZ (controlled parking zone).
RM advised that £500,000 had been allocated for shop front grants. This would be lost if it were not used by the end of the financial year. The area covered was quite extensive, including, for example, Rosendale Road. Perhaps NAG could promote the shop front grant availability and tenants should be encouraged to apply by the TCM.
RM noted that £18 million of the Council's environment budget goes to pay for crime issues happening on estate and graffiti which was not notified to police by Housing Officers and Streetscene. Such notification should be encouraged.
BB suggested that NAG could persuade the Kingfisher Group to clean up Woolworths, an example of an art deco building. RM suggested that a letter be written to Kingfisher asking that it preserve and restore the building and that grant funding may be available. Perhaps a listing or conservation order would be put in place. The issue could also be raised in the Newsletter. BB was to ask for a meeting with the local store Manager.