Monday, 17 October 2016

Wonderful, wonderful Ladywell Fields!

Ladywell Fields, from Ladywell Road bridge (17 Oct 2016)
Here in Ladywell we are blessed with a number of wonderful local parks.  Our two largest parks offer a wonderful contrast - we have Hilly Fields at the top of the hill and, at the foot of the hill between Ladywell Station and the Hospital, we have the evergreen Ladywell Fields.
For those of you not already aware, until about a century ago Ladywell Fields were watermeadows used for grazing animals (see photo to the left, looking east from Ladywell Station towards where 'The 'Playtower currently is, and this one from the Borough archives).
Ladywell Fields, at around the turn of the 19th century, looking north
from approximately where the 'curly bridge' over the railway now is.
In 1889 the area was purchased by the London County Council and Lewisham District Board of Works, with further land purchased later, and was opened as Ladywell Recreation Ground. Because the area was liable to flooding, the River Ravensbourne was straightened and enlarged, weirs were added, and the meadows were drained and landscaped.
Over the last decade over £2m of investment from the European Union and the London Development Agency has seen the renaturalisation of the River channel and other significant improvements.  The park has two children's playgrounds, a skatepark, an adventure playground, The Ten Thousand Hands Cafe and, quite uniquely, the River Ravensbourne in which kids can safely paddle, under supervision(!), during most of the year.  So what's not to like!
To get involved with the Friends of Ladywell Fields email or have a look at the Ladywell Fields blogspot.
Robert Sheppard

Ladywell Tavern Refurb Underway

It seems the new owners of the Ladywell Tavern are giving the building the t.l.c. it's needed for a few years now. Scaffolding is up and builders were today repairing the parapet at the very top of the building.

Whilst we're aware there's a planning application awaiting determination (weblink below), LVIG is keen, as are many Ladywell residents, to know what the owners' plans are (e.g. for the first and second floors) and, perhaps most importantly, when the pub will reopen!

You can find the planning application - for "the demolition of two outbuildings and a garage to create a beer garden to the rear of the Ladywell Tavern . . . together with the erection of timber gates fronting onto Slagrove Place and new glazed doors to the function room" - here on the Lewisham Council website.

Robert Sheppard

Wednesday, 27 July 2016

Unauthorised demolition of historic Mercy Terrace stables

Photo of the rear of Mercy Terrace, taken from
the bridge (c.2011)
The Council’s Planning Enforcement Team carried out a site visit on 25 July when officers noted that the historic stable buildings had been completely demolished and the foundation for a new building had been excavated. 
The level of demolition is ‘substantial’ and to have done this is an offence under the Planning Acts (where planning permission is not in place for such development).
The Council has therefore issued a warning of the likelihood of formal enforcement action, given that an offence has been committed.  It has been made clear that the works should cease immediately (subject to making the site safe).
Planning Enforcement officers will be visiting the site again to check that the notice to cease works is being observed.

Monday, 25 July 2016

10-14 Mercy Terrace - Update

In January this year the Council refused planning permission for a development on this existing warehouse site round the back of the Ladywell Post Office.  The Council wrote, amongst other things:
  • the proposed dwelling mix, through the inclusion of studio units and the failure to provide any family sized dwellings, would fail to provide a long term and  sustainable solution to housing need within the borough . . . ; and that
  • the development would fail to provide an acceptable standard of residential amenity for future occupiers by reason of the provision of undersized units which would have poor internal amenity levels due to the substandard access to sunlight and daylight and would also fail to provide dedicated private amenity space for all units . . . ; and that
  • the proposed development would fail to provide any affordable housing . . .

Now a further application has been received for "Demolition of the existing building and the construction of a mixed-use development comprising approximately 372sqm of office floorspace (Use Class B1) and a part 3/part4/part 5 storey building to provide 45 residential units together with the provision of disabled parking and landscaping at 10-14 Mercy Terrace SE13 (Outline Application)."
This looks like little more than a reduction in units from 49 to 45 but it's difficult to know as no supporting documents are yet available on the Council website.
Robert Sheppard

Wednesday, 13 July 2016

Three Peaks Challenge this Saturday - can you hack it?

A new circular walking route is being launched in Lewisham, with a special event in aid of two charities supporting young people.
The Lewisham Three Peaks Challenge is a sponsored walk taking place on 16 July 2016, starting at 11.00am in Hilly Fields, SE4.  It will follow the route of the new Three Peaks Green Route, which links up the hilly parks of Hilly Fields. One Tree Hill and Blythe Hill with the shops and cafes of Crofton Park, Honor Oak and Ladywell.
A group of local residents has produced an illustrated map and guide to the walk with funding from Ladywell Assembly.  The 5-mile circular route passes through parks and historic cemeteries, as well visiting some popular shopping streets, with plenty of pubs and cafes for refreshment stops.  The guide includes interesting historical information and suggests what to look out for along the way. For people coming from outside the area – or who want a short cut - there are plenty of transport links to join the route.
To launch the new walk, residents have teamed up with the Stephen Lawrence Trust and For Jimmy.
A sponsored walk on Saturday 16 July will ‘christen’ the circular route and raise money for the charities. Money is also being raised from the donations received for the maps and from sales of a special limited edition ‘Lewisham 3 Peaks Challenge’ t-shirt. This has been designed by Guardian cartoonist and local resident, Martin Rowson.
Further information available on Facebook ( or Twitter (@Brockley3Peaks).
You can also sign up to raise money for the charities at