Some information regarding the planning application to install a concrete batching works in Waterside Way, beside the River Wandle and a mere gust of wind across the railway line from the Havelock Road allotments, Garfield Park children’s playground and the gardens of homes in Havelock and Caxton Roads. Council officers still recommend that the application should be approved.
- The scheme featured in the Rotten Boroughs section of Private Eye magazine this week.
- Having been removed several times from the agenda of recent Planning Applications Committee (PAC) meetings, the plans are now scheduled for a hearing on Tuesday July 18, 2017.
- Planning officers originally recommended the scheme should be approved without a hearing, but local councillor Abdul Latif insisted they be ‘called in’ for public discussion.
- Cllr Latif is also a governor at Garfield Primary School, close to the site of the proposed concrete batching works. The school and its governing body (not notified by the council that this scheme was proposed) have both submitted written objections to the plans, protesting about noise and air pollution. Cllr Latif has confirmed that he will be speaking against the scheme at the PAC on July 18, as will a representative of the school and staff/governing body.
- The council says that the plans were previously removed from the PAC agenda because Future Merton was seeking clarification on the scale of buildings required for the proposed plant.
- Recent air quality measurements from Plough Lane and Gap Road indicate that NO2 levels already consistently exceed the ‘legal’ limit.
- Sustainable Merton (which participated in a recent public air quality meeting in Wimbledon), says “we find it difficult to see how it will be legal to award planning permission for a proposal which will make already illegal levels of pollution even worse”.
- The Wandle Valley Trust, which is working to make quietways alongside the River Wandle more user friendly, is cross that it was not officially advised of this scheme (we alerted them to it, not the council).
- We understand that a number of residents (no households received official notification of the planning application) have lodged complaints with Merton Council for failing to keep them informed of the fact that the plans were put on the PAC agenda multiple times but then withdrawn etc.
Anyone who has registered a written objection to the concrete batching plant has the right to request time to speak in person at the PAC meeting on July 18. The more residents and interested parties who do so, the more likely (one would hope) this scheme is to be refused permission.
All documents relating to the planning application can be viewed on the council’s website. We understand that written submissions about the scheme are still being accepted.