18 February 2018

Dartmouth Road Street Party!



The closure of Dartmouth Road has been an inconvenience for many residents and especially for shops, but the road will reopen on 11th March with all of its new surfacing and layout completed.

Before that, on Saturday 10th March, there will be a street party on Dartmouth Road, to enjoy the new road and pavements before it is reopened to traffic. Horniman Museum are relocating their weekly farmers’ market to Dartmouth Road for the day and there will be a variety of activities for children and adults, including music, dancing and bouncing!

This will be a fun day to celebrate the new road, as well as the businesses and community that  make Forest Hill so nice.

Once Dartmouth Road is reopened, there will be double yellow lines along more of the road to help keep traffic moving, and there will be a few additional parking and loading bays close to the shops. We have been promised enforcement of the parking so that we do not get a repetition of the parking on pavements that we saw when the road was undergoing changes.

If you are willing to help set up and steward the street party, please email chair@fhsoc.com.

10 February 2018

Forest Hill Society response to the Extension of the ULEZ

To summarise the Forest Hill Society’s response, we would like to see a larger ULEZ, with strong penalties for non-compliance, and as soon as possible. Additionally, we have concerns about impacts on Forest Hill residents from potentially greater numbers of polluting vehicles using the South Circular as a result of your current proposal to exclude this road from the ULEZ. Finally, if the boundary is to be located just inside the South Circular, we think there should be additional consideration given to accessing by car some community facilities which are inside and close to the boundary of the ULEZ.

An additional concern the Society has with regard to the ULEZ is in relation to the siting of enforcement cameras. We expect that TfL will give careful consideration to camera locations to ensure that no camera-free routes inside the South Circular are unintentionally created. Such routes may give rise to rat-running and potentially illegal and dangerous driving, such as going the wrong way along one-way streets. It is important that any scheme will not result in these behaviours.


Below are the detailed responses provided to TfL in their consultation:

1.    Do you support tougher vehicle emissions standards in the London-wide Low Emission Zone so that heavy vehicles must meet the Euro VI emissions standards London-wide?
 Strongly support


2.    Do you support the proposed implementation date of 26 October 2020 for the introduction of tougher standards for heavy vehicles driving in the London-wide Low Emission Zone?
Oppose (should be sooner)


3.    Do you support the proposed daily charges to be paid by owners of heavy vehicles that do not meet the required emissions standards?

 Support

4.    Do you support the principle of expanding the area where ULEZ emissions standards apply to light vehicles beyond central London?
 Support an expansion but area should be larger

Additional comments: The North Circular sits almost 9km from the current congestion charging zone boundary, while the South Circular is less than 6km distant. The result of this is that there are large areas of south London with high annual mean NO2 concentrations not falling within the extended ULEZ. That south London will not receive the same benefits from the ULEZ as north London is considered inequitable.

Recognising the need for action to combat poor air quality, the Society would support a larger ULEZ, extending even to the full extent of Greater London.


5.    We are proposing that the ULEZ emissions standards would apply to the inner London area, roughly up to but not including the North and South Circulars roads. Do you support this proposed boundary?
Strongly oppose

Additional comments: The Society has a number of concerns regarding the siting of the southern boundary of the extended ULEZ just inside the South Circular:

•    The South Circular is the only Air Quality Management Area (AQMA) in the Forest Hill area. We are concerned that following the implementation of the extended ULEZ, this road may become more heavily trafficked, including a larger number of vehicles which do not meet the ULEZ standards. As a result, the levels of pollution suffered by people living close to the South Circular, an area currently failing to meet legal air quality limit values, may increase.
•    In many ways the South Circular is just an arbitrary boundary in the middle of an urban area. Our community would be split with some living within the ULEZ and others outside. Some Forest Hill residents and businesses would therefore have to deal with the ULEZ charges or costs of upgrading their vehicles, while others would not. Rather than face this inequity, we would rather that all residents and businesses face the costs and benefits equally.
•    Streets to the south of the South Circular may face increased parking pressure, as residents and businesses to the north may choose to park their vehicles outside the ULEZ rather than pay the associated charges or upgrade their vehicle. As well as increasing pressure on parking, the traffic associated with these additional polluting vehicles may impact the residents of those streets.

In addition, if the decision is made to extend the ULEZ up to but not including the South Circular, the Society would like to see a greater level of consideration given to exactly where the boundary would be located in relation to certain community facilities. For example, within Forest Hill we have a dialysis unit and a GP practice car park (Jenner Practice) within but close to the currently proposed boundary of the ULEZ. These are marked on your ULEZ map number 57. It is our view that facilities of this nature should, where reasonably practicable due to their proximity to the proposed boundary, remain outside the ULEZ



6.    Do you support the proposed implementation date of 25 October 2021 for the expansion of ULEZ to include light vehicles in inner London?
Oppose (should be sooner)


7.    Do you support the proposed ULEZ daily charge to be paid by non-compliant owners of light vehicles of £12.50?
Neither

Additional comments: Although the Society recognises the need for charges for non-compliant vehicles as part of the ULEZ, we have concerns about how equitable the proposals are. Those able to afford the charges or to upgrade their vehicle, or indeed who have been able to afford a more modern vehicle, will be little impacted, while the lives of less affluent people may be adversely impacted. The Society would prefer to see a system of road user charging adopted as soon as possible. This could be along the lines of the system promoted by the Association for Consultancy and Engineering, which appropriately takes account of the driver’s circumstances as well as the impact of the trip on the environment and congestion.

8.    Do you support bringing forward the end of the sunset period for residents in the Central London Congestion Charging zone from 7 April 2022 to 24 October 2021 so that all residents of inner London, including the Congestion Charging zone, pay the daily charge for non compliant vehicles from 25 October 2021?
 Strongly support


9.    Do you support increasing the penalty charge (PCN) level for non-payment of the ULEZ daily charge by owners of non-compliant light vehicles from £130 to £160?
Strongly support

06 January 2018

Burns Night 2018

It is almost time for our annual Forest Hill Society - Robert Burns Night Supper where we combine Scottish food, Scottish poetry, and a wee dram of Scottish whisky in a great evening.

Once again, the Forest Hill Society in conjunction with All Inn One, on Perry Vale, will be hosting a Burns Supper on Saturday 27th January.

There will be the traditional Address to the Haggis and the opportunity to listen to or to read from the works of Robert Burns. We will also have some local musicians to round off the evening.
The meal is from 7.30pm, and if you'd like to join us you must book in advance, please call the pub on 020 8699 3311 or email info@allinnone.org.uk to book.

The cost is £21.95 per person for 3 courses and a very enjoyable evening. (Please let them know if you would prefer the vegetarian haggis to the meaty version).

Everybody is welcome; members, non-members, Scots, Sassenachs, and all friends of Scotland.

Early booking is recommended as places are limited. Last year not everybody who left it until the last minute was able to get a seat.

17 December 2017

Planning Application: 4 Dartmouth Road

An application has been submitted for the conversion of a basement below a shop to a one bedroom flat:

DC/17/103834 | Change of use and alterations to the existing basement including provision of lightwells to provide a one bedroom self-contained flat at 4 Dartmouth Road SE23. | 4 DARTMOUTH ROAD, LONDON, SE23 3XU

The Forest Hill Society object to this proposal on the grounds of:
1. Lack of light to the living accommodation;
2. Insufficient provision for emergency egress.

Both these grounds are based on the proposed unit being created in a basement with natural light and outside space being provided by a lightwell that will, in effect, be two storeys deep.

daylight assessment has not been provided with the application but it is clear that very little natural light would enter the unit.

The existing basement has no natural light and it is proposed to excavate part of the back garden to provide a light well.  The distance between the windows in the living room to the proposed 1-storey high retaining wall appears to be about 1 metre.  Above the proposed retaining wall there currently exists the wall of a 1-storey high building which appears to be set back about 1.5-2 metres.  In effect, a double-storey lightwell would be created.

The kitchen window and external door from the living room lead into an underground passageway which will not provide any light into the accommodation.

There is no provision for an external staircase in the lightwell which means the 'patio area' would not provide a means of emergency escape from the unit.  The only way out is through the unit into the staircase leading to the ground floor.

The proposed unit would provide sub-standard accommodation and the application should be refused.

23 November 2017

22 November 2017

Planning Application: 62 Sunderland Road

There has been a new application for 62 Sunderland Road (DC/17/103895) which can be viewed on the council website. This follows a previous application for this site which was opposed by the Forest Hill Society and was rejected by the council.

The Forest Hill Society has objected to this application and our detailed response can be read here.

It is our hope that the council continue their work on creating a conservation area in this area, which would protect some of these historic Christmas Houses - including this building.

19 November 2017

Christmas Tree Lighting and Carols - Saturday 2nd December 2017

The Forest Hill Ward Assembly, Forest Hill Society, and Churches Together Forest Hill and Sydenham present Christmas Tree Sparkles!

Join us at Forest Hill Station from 3.30pm for singing, music and refreshments, at 4pm count down for the tree light switch on - led by Ellie Reeves MP.

Gems Performing Arts will then lead a procession by the children up Dartmouth Road to: Kirkdale (meet at The Journey Café on the Old Woodman Pub site).

The singing and festivities will continue and at 5.15pm the Christmas tree lights will be switched on!

A second procession will start at 4.45pm in Baxter Field led by Friends of Baxter Field. There will be a lantern procession down to Kirkdale and the lighting of the Christmas tree!
(bring a glass jar with a tea light).

Kirkdale Traders will be hosting their annual Christmas Late Night ShoppingEvent from 6-8pm

Come and join us, this is for all to enjoy and the more the merrier!

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Christmas Card Screen Printing

Forest Hill Library will have a free Christmas Card Screen Printing Workshop for kids on Saturday 2nd December, 2-3pm at Forest Hill Library

13 November 2017