Goose Green Councillor Newsletter - August 2019
This is the first of what we hope will become a regular newsletter. They will be posted online here and emailed out to anyone who signs up here.
Work in the community
Here is a sample of some of the work we have done in the community in July and August.
20-22 Lordship Lane
The old mental health unit on Lordship Lane is being done up so it can be used for shared workspace and community events. James met with the company who will manage the building - Oru Space - over August.
They organised a community consultation event on 27th August and have agreed to host another in September once term has started again. We will work with them to promote the event and to ensure that the community can shape what happens there. This is a fantastic space and in the centre of East Dulwich - we do not want to waste the opportunity.
Number 12 bus
We councillors were disappointed by TfL’s cut to the number 12 bus. Unlike other recent changes to bus services this was entirely without consultation. We believe that it will disproportionately affect those with lower incomes. We have written to the Deputy Mayor of London for Transport, Heidi Alexander, and you can read our letter here: http://bit.ly/GGNum12.
Controlled Parking Zone
Over the summer the council published its ‘final report’ on which Cllr Richard Livingstone makes his decision. The bulk of the recommendations we made on behalf of residents were accepted - most notably the reduction in size of the zone. However, the council also proposed - without consulting us - that the East Dulwich and Peckham West Zones be merged. The residents in each zone wanted different times of operation so the merger would have meant one set of residents did not get what they wanted. A number of East Dulwich residents in the affected area lobbied us and we were successful in maintaining two separate zones: all day around Grove Vale and for two hours in ‘Peckham West’.
Next there will be a statutory consultation for residents in the proposes zones. This will be regarding the details of implementation and it will run through September - dates to be confirmed.
For info about the compromise position that we councillors took, read James’ article in SE22 earlier this year here: http://bit.ly/GGSE22CPZ.
When term starts in September two schools in Goose Green will have temporary road closures around pick-up and drop-off times: ‘School Streets’. Goose Green Primary School and Harris Primary Academy East Dulwich are amongst a handful of schools across Southwark to have the scheme in place. This will make the roads safer for children and reduce air pollution around the schools.
Council Assembly met on 17th July. The theme of the meeting was transport and climate change. James spoke on the themed motion to criticise government cuts to TfL, praise the TSSA and Unite campaigns against the cuts, and to raise our local issue with the number 12 bus. There was a wide range of other topics discussed. Details are in the agenda and papers, available here http://bit.ly/GGCA0719.
New council homes in Goose Green
The council is seeking planning permission to build four new council homes on Bassano Street, where the garages are currently. If accepted, this will make a small contribution to tackling the housing crisis across London. Residents nearby have expressed concerns about privacy and overlooking. These concerns have led to some changes in the design but there are a number of objections to the application nonetheless.
Residents can comment on the application here: http://bit.ly/GGBassano
Health Scrutiny Commission
On the 2nd September at 7pm, there will be first Health Scrutiny Commission meeting, chaired by Victoria. If any residents want to feed into the ongoing health debates around keeping the NHS public, resisting the merging of the CCG (Commissioning Health Boards across Southwark and the other 5 South East London boroughs (Lewisham, Lambeth, Bexley, Bromley and Greenwich)), they should contact Victoria at Victoria.firstname.lastname@example.org or Julie.email@example.com to be invited to a meeting. We need as much public and community engagement and views in order to keep our services local and public.
Garden waste charge
We are aware of the many problems with the roll-out of the garden waste payment system. If anyone is still experiencing issues, please contact us and we will look into it. As noted in our last report, we wish this policy were not in place but sadly recognise it as necessary in the context of Tory austerity. Southwark Council has lost half its government grant in the past ten years, and with two thirds of the budget allocated to vital adult and children’s services it is hard to find savings. We see the garden waste charge as the least-worst option.