May 28th, 2012
On Saturday I attended the Stroud Green Neighbourhood Day – an afternoon of community activity in the roads around Stroud Green Library. Well done to Kit, Helen and everyone else involved in co-ordinating the stalls and organising the activities. Its a great way of bringing people together.
I particularly enjoyed the Stroud Green Women’s Institute’s cake stall, and it was great to get some bike maintenance advice from ‘Dr Bike’. However, my highlight was being shown round the Stroud Green Library garden for the first time (see picture). Volunteers have turned what was a run down backyard into a fantastic little garden with plants, flowers and vegetables – and they have now expanded to plant up the small area in front of the Library. Another brilliant example of community spirit in Stroud Green!
March 7th, 2011
Last week I held a meeting with parking officials to discuss the implementation of the new Controlled Parking Zone (CPZ) extension in Stroud Green. As I mentioned in my previous post, residents were concerned about how long they would have to wait for the controls to be introduced in roads like Mount View, Quernmore and Granville. The nearby Crouch End CPZ extension is taking effect in early April, but at a recent meeting with residents officers said it would take until November to implement the CPZ extension in Stroud Green ward – leaving over 6 months of extra parking pressure.
I raised these concerns at the meeting, and Council officers have now agreed to revise the timetable, and think they could have the new CPZ extension up and running in the new roads by September. This would mean having the final statutory consultation in April/May, and if no big issues are raised during the consultation, the signs and road markings could be put in place during August. Obviously this still leaves a long gap – but its great news that we’ve been able to reduce it by 2 months.
However, on the hours of the CPZ officers continue to believe that 12pm – 2pm is the best slot, as this fits in-between other CPZs (the Crouch End ones are 10am-12pm and 2pm-4pm) and will make it easy to patrol. They aren’t convinced that people moving their cars between CPZs will be a big problem as this hasn’t happened in noticeable numbers in other areas.
I also raised a whole range of other issues, such as the need for visitor parking and loading bays for our local shopping parades, the Stroud Green Library and the two churches on Stapleton Hall Road. I’ll keep scrutinising their proposals as they are developed – so please contact me if you have any concerns.
February 20th, 2011
The Finsbury Park Controlled Parking Zone (CPZ) is very likely to be extended up to Ridge Road after 66% of those consulted by the Council asked for resident parking controls. Earlier this week I attended a meeting with parking officers and residents to hear the results of the consultation, which finished at the start of 2011. According to the briefing, 16% of residents in the consultation area outside the current CPZ responded, with 218 in favour of the expansion and 114 against.
If the expansion goes ahead as expected the following roads will now be added in to the Finsbury Park CPZ:
- The whole of Addington, Albany, Elyne, Quernmore and Ridge Roads
- The rest of Stapleton Hall Road, Mount View Road and Oakfield Roads (which are currently only half in the CPZ)
- The remaining part of Ferme Park Road (south of Ridge Road) – with the road north of Ridge Road going into the Crouch End CPZ.
Apparently 69% of respondents wanted parking controls for the minimum 2 hours a day. The Council are suggesting 12 noon to 2pm – but at the meeting this week some residents wanted different hours, so the officers are going to look at this. The Council will now draw up detailed proposals showing where all the parking bays will be – and there will have to be a short ’statutory consultation’ on the final plans. With this further work, the Council have said it will take until November for the new extension to be implemented, which means residents will have to suffer several more months of parking difficulties.
The consultation inside the existing CPZ seems to have got more mixed results, with an almost 50/50 split on whether the hours should be reduced or not. But the Council are proposing to create a small inner zone near the tube station to try to deal with particular problems in Woodstock, Perth, Ennis and Oxford Roads. I’ve asked officers for an urgent meeting to look at the detailed results – to make sure they are fairly representing the views expressed.
During 2009 Ed Butcher and I surveyed several hundred people about whether they wanted the CPZ (see picture) and got a very similar result. Its a shame its taken the Council well over a year to catch up – but this is a big victory for those residents who have been pushing for a CPZ for all these years.
February 16th, 2011
Local residents have only a few more days to have their say on new plans for a 5 bedroom house to be built on garden space behind Elyne, Quernmore and Stapleton Hall Roads in the Stroud Green Conservation Area. Following an earlier botched consultation by the Council where letters went to the wrong addresses, I’ve got the deadline for resident responses extended until this Monday 21 February.
This new application follows a very similar previous application last summer, which was rejected by the Council following scores of objections from local residents and from me. The planning officers agreed with us that local gardens should be protected, and that the development was too large and intrusive for such a tiny site, and would damage residents’ enjoyment of their gardens (see previous post).
However, these new plans try to get round these objections by sinking the house into a hole to reduce its relative height. Today, I’ve sent in an objection to the Council, arguing that the proposal is still unacceptable, because of the loss of garden space and because the proposal is still to large, tall and close to the boundary of people’s gardens. The Council’s reasons for refusing the first application still stand for this second one and I hope that officers will reject these plans again.
To have your say, please comment on the application on the Council’s website.
October 27th, 2010
Great news for the many local residents who want action on parking: the consultation on whether the Finsbury Park Controlled Parking Zone should be extended north is due to to start on 19 November. The consultation will extend as far north as Ridge Road, and including all the roads inbetween that are not already in the CPZ such as Mount View, Granville, Quernmore, Ferme Park, Stapleton Hall and Oakfield Roads.
This consultation is something Katherine, Ed and I have been pushing hard for – after we did a survey of residents which indicated many people in this area were now in favour of a CPZ. I’ve helped the Council to recruit volunteers for focus group of local residents to help design the consultation questions, which was a very successful event. There will be two separate consultation documents – one for people outside the CPZ asking if they would like it extended, and what hours they would like. The other will go to everyone inside the existing CPZ asking if they would like the rules and hours of the zone changed. Many residents are pushing for the CPZ to be divided into a smaller inner zone with long hours, and outer zones, with minimal hours.
This consultation will follow hot on the heels of the Crouch End CPZ consultation, which has been very high profile. This consultation extended east from the centre of Crouch End as far as Ferme Park Road. The results of this consultation will be available soon.
Roads that are north of Ridge Road and east of Ferme Park Road (Nelson, Inderwick, Mayfield, Denton, Uplands) are left out of both these consultations. Understandably some residents here are concerned about the risk that parking pressures will soar if the CPZ boundary moves closer. I’ve asked the Council how quickly a new consultation could be organised in these roads if residents demand it – and have been told that it could be possible in the 2011/12 financial year.
A further complication is that the Council are about to start a review of the costs of resident and visitor parking permits. I’ve been told that proposals will go to the November cabinet. I’ve written to the Labour cabinet member in charge of parking saying that a hike in charges will only heighten cynicism about the councils motives in extending CPZs, and should be avoided. Parking controls should be there to help residents, not as backhand source of revenue for the Council – and we will scrutinise any proposals on charges to make sure they are fair.
September 9th, 2010
Great news for residents of Elyne Road, Quernmore Road and Stapleton Hall Road who don’t want a new development at the end of their back gardens: The Council’s planning department have refused permission for a 5 bedroom house in a green area between these roads. As I mentioned in previous posts, I’ve been helping residents to object to the proposal that is completely inappropriate for this quiet green space.
The planning department’s judgement is on the Council’s website and it is clear that the 41 objections and the petition did make an impact. I’m pleased to see the points from my objection and from the Stroud Green Residents Association were included in the report – it shows that determined local action can make a difference.
As the department’s report says, allowing this development would have set a precedent across the Borough that would have allowed garden areas to be broken up and developed. So these objectors in one corner of Stroud Green have helped to protect gardens across Haringey – Well done!
August 23rd, 2010
Yesterday, I submitted an objection to the new ‘backlands’ development proposed for land in-between Elyne Road, Stapleton Hall Road and Quernmore Road in support of local residents. The plans, which are on the Council’s website, are for a large 5 bedroom house that will completely change the feel of this garden area .
Afte meeting with local residents and visiting the site, I’ve urged the Council to reject the application for a number of reasons:
- Poor access: Access to the site is extremely poor with the path down the side of 2 Elyne less than 1 metre wide in places. This will make construction very difficult and building materials cannot be delivered to the site without causing a great deal of disruption – as they will have to be unloaded onto the street and then carried up the path.
- Loss of green space and natural habitat: The gardens between Stapleton Hall Road, Quernmore Road and Elyne Road – with this site at its centre – are an important green space for local residents and for birds and animals. Building in the middle of the site will badly degrade this green space and destroy the habitat of the animals and birds that residents regularly see in their gardens.
- This is a greenfield not a brownfield site so building housing here will not help the Council meet its targets for building new homes.
- Bulk and density: The proposed dwelling is too large and bulky for the site – taking up a very large proportion of the plot and goes up very close to the borders of neighbouring gardens. It is therefore an unacceptable increase in the housing density in the area.
- Loss of amenity for residents: There must be well over a hundred residents living in homes that back on to the site, who would all have their view from their back windows and gardens affected by this development. Many of these gardens will also duffer from overlooking from the new dwelling. There would therefore be an unacceptable loss of amenity from residents who will lose some of the enjoyment of their gardens.
The decision on the application won’t be taken till early September and there are already over 40 objections submitted on the Council’s website.