Category Archives: Planning Issues

Plaza Cinema Planning November 2012 Update

Outline Planning Consent granted but there is still much to do

Dear Plaza Supporter

Last week the Planning Inspector upheld the appeal and granted Gresham outline planning permission to demolish the existing building and replace it with a mix of residential, retail and leisure. A copy of the Inspector’s decision is posted on our website Gresham’s outline application back in January with its huge amount of irrelevant material continued to cause confusion and debate right through the appeal process. In the end the Inspector stripped away all the irrelevant data and gave outline consent purely on the basic application.

So what does this mean? Well, after nearly a year the picture remains very unclear. The Inspector agreed that the new building can be a mix of residential, retail and leisure uses but gave no guidance on what amounts of each would be acceptable. He also said “only means of access is agreed at this time” and everything else i.e. appearance, landscaping, layout and scale of the new building is “reserved” for a full planning application.

The Inspector was sympathetic to the retention of D2 leisure and made a number of comments about the need to protect it, referring to the applicability of the National Planning Policy Framework, and citing “existing sports and recreational buildings should not be built on…unless they are clearly shown to be surplus to requirements or replaced by a better provision in terms of quality and quantity”. He also cited Policy DMO2b citing “that change of use of development involving the loss of indoor sports facilities will only be permitted where…it can be demonstrated that there is no current or future need or demand for the facility”. These statements are important references when the full planning application is ultimately submitted and considered by Wandsworth Council and I think it that respect we have much to be confident about.

We recently met Justine Greening MP and she reconfirmed the importance to her of retaining meaningful D2 leisure use, in both quantity and quality, on this site. We will also be discussing next steps with our Councillors, who have been very supportive to date, to ensure we keep the momentum up and the pressure on Gresham to engage with the community.

There is much to play for and we will be there at every stage of the process.

Rob Richman

21st November 2012


Plaza Planning Application Refused writes Rob Richman [Southfields Plaza Group]

Dear Supporter

On 18th April 2012 Wandsworth Council Planning Committee followed their officers’ advice and refused the outline planning application for 227 – 231 Wimbledon Park Road SW18.

The committee further encouraged the applicant to re-think their plans and conduct a more exhaustive and inclusive pre-application with council officers and local residents.

I’m sure the owners will need a little time to reflect on this decision but I’m cautiously optimistic that they will now see the imperative to engage with us and the wider community in Southfields to bring forward a far better and more popular scheme.

We at the Southfields Plaza Group will continue with our efforts to engage positively with the owners and their agents. As soon as I have more news I will be in touch.

Once again I would like to thank everyone that has supported the campaign and I feel privileged to be part of a community that cares so passionately about its future. Without your support this would not have been possible.

Best wishes

Rob Richman

Southfields Plaza Campaign Group []



The revised planning application (2011/5471) for the PO building and Boys Club hall now includes a self-contained space for the Post Office.
It also says that they will demolish the hall and build the Post Office space there before demolishing the PO building, so that there is no need for the PO to relocate in the meantime. The plans also include a larger community space.

Margaret,  SGRA Planning Representative

Thames Tunnel Plans – Have your say!

Thames Tunnel Plans

You can have your say on the Thames Tunnel consultation website at You have until 10th February 2012

Thames Tunnel have now identified the brownfield site at Carnworth Road in Hammersmith, rather than the greenfield site at Barn Elms, as their preferred construction site for the drive shaft for the new tunnel under the Thames for the new ‘super sewer’. Continue reading