West Ealing has 3 of the worst streets for fly-tipping in Ealing. What can residents do to help?

According to an article in this week’s Ealing Gazette West Ealing has three of the five worst streets in Ealing for fly-tipping. The five worst are:

  1. The Broadway, West Ealing
  2. Leeland Road, West Ealing
  3. Valetta Road, Acton
  4. Uxbridge Road, West Ealing
  5. Northcote Avenue, Southall

The ratings are based on the number of reports of rubbish being dumped that are received by the Council.  The Council’s clean-up teams clear over 100 fly-tips across the borough every working day.

To say the least, this is disappointing news for residents of West Ealing. Yet, does the answer lie mostly in our own hands?  I regularly use the Council’s ‘Report It’ app to tell them about the fly-tips I see on local streets and my impression is that much of the fly-tipping is done locally.  Yes, some of the big fly-tips may well be done by people who don’t live in the area but it’s the black bags, mattresses, pieces of broken furniture and so on that constitute many of these fly-tips. and I suspect many of these come from local residents.

Too often it’s easiest just to walk by and ignore the fly-tips or hope someone else will report it. Maybe it will improve when the Council brings its street cleaning services back in house. But what can we all do as local residents to help tackle this blight on our streets?   For example, should West Ealing Neighbours organise some regular clean up days around West Ealing?  Would you be willing to help?  Should we crowdfund for an extra street cleaner to focus on the worst local streets? What ideas do you have?  We’d love to hear from you either by leaving a comment here or emailing us at westealingneighbours@gmail.com

 

St James Church in West Ealing to close after 100 years

After over a century, St James Church in West Ealing is closing its doors – this time for good. It was closed down for a period some years ago. I can remember it boarded up and with broken windows. This time though it looks like its closing for good. Services stop this month and classes in the church hall are coming to an end as well.  It looks like a combination of a dwindling congregation and the cost of the church’s upkeep . St James along with St John in Mattock Lane make up one of the Church of England parishes.

It’s been a feature of the local community for over 100 years and we now await a decision by the church authorities as to what next for this building. West Ealing Neighbours and other local groups would dearly love it to become a community venue. It could host a wide range of activities for all age groups from a space for older residents to meet and socialise to a vibrant space for teenagers in the evenings. Alongside these uses it could be a space for live performances, music rehearsal,  and a temporary gallery for the artists and craftspeople who will occupy the second floor of the nearby co-working hub Ealing Works due to open in St James Ave later this year.

No decision is likely until early next year.  We will update this story as more information becomes available.

NatWest bank site in West Ealing for sale for £1m

It’s been there for many years but the now closed NatWest bank site at the Lido Junction is now for sale for £1,050,000. Whilst it’s not a listed building it’s one of West Ealing’s few architectural landmarks. We can only hope whoever buys it keeps retains the building or will it too be demolished and replaced by yet another tower block?

Public consultation about plans for hotel in town hall

Mastcraft  – which is looking to take over the Town Hall and turn it into a “Boutique Hotel” with the loss of The VIctoria Hall from much public access, has announced that there is to be a public consultation on its plans from  Thursday 21st June to Saturday 23rd June in the Walpole Room in the Town Hall. It is expected that their plans will be based on this scheme which, if they were to proceed, would involve the demolition of property that is in the Victoria Hall trusts ownership.
The consultation is open on
Thursday 21st June 09:30 – 12:30
Friday 22nd June 14:30 – 17:30
Saturday 23rd June 10:30 – 15:00

There is more information about these plans on Save Ealing’s Centre website.

New St John’s Primary School officially opens

It almost didn’t happen. The original plans for the redevelopment of the Green Man Lane Estate did not include a new school for St John’s even though the school was built as part of the original estate in the 1970s which was deemed no longer fit for purpose. At the time, WEN commented on this and proposed that this was the ideal opportunity to build a new school as there was already great pressure on primary school places.

Luckily, good sense won the day and the plans were amended to include a new school and to build houses along Felix Road on the original site of the school.

The new school which officially opens today (19th June) can take over 600 pupils along with some 100 in its new nursery. All in all, a welcome addition to the primary schools in West Ealing.

Is this the end for West Ealing’s Poundworld?

Poundworld has appointed receivers for its nationwide chain of discount stores. The chain is just one of a number of high street retailers which have suffered over recent months – House of Fraser, Maplin and Toys ‘R’ Us being just a few. Its collapse puts at risk over 5,000 jobs nationwide.

The West Ealing branch is in the old Woolworth’s store and would probably have had to move with the site’s likely redevelopment(see story below).

The receivers Deloitte’s seem hopeful that some or all of the Poundworld stores will be bought.

Up to 15-storey high block of flats proposed for old Woolworth’s site in West Ealing

After a long delay A2Dominion have submitted their planning application for the old art-deco fronted Woolworth’s site in West Ealing.  It’s likely to prove a controversial application given the many hundreds of people who signed West Ealing Centre Neighbourhood Forum’s petition to save the art-deco facade.  (You can still sign this petition here.) The application sees the site demolished so the facade will go if the application is approved by the Council.

The application is for 120 flats and just under 1,000 sq metres of retail space on the ground floor. The block will be up to 11 storeys at the front along the Uxbridge Rd and up to 15 storeys at the back on Singapore Rd. From looking at the drawings this makes it taller both front and back than any of the existing nearby buildings.

The application can be found here. The closing date for comments is 8th June.

If you would like to object to this application we have produced quite a detailed set of six points for you to consider. Also, at the bottom you will find a template letter with short summaries of these six points which you can use and amend as you wish.

Reasons for objecting to A2Dominion’s plans for 96-102 Broadway, West Ealing

1.Planning policy issues

Falls short of  Ealing Council’s  target of 50% affordable housing

Ealing Council in its Housing and Homeless Strategy 2014-19 has as one of its key outcomes to ‘Ensure 50%of new homes are affordable housing’. Plans for this site are for a total of 35% affordable housing and not 50%. This proposal  includes 35% affordable housing split between 62% affordable rented and 38% intermediate housing. With the full 50% affordable housing the site should have the following:

42 social housing units against the proposed 26

18 intermediate housing units against the proposed 16

So, the plans fall short on both counts.

Exceeds London Plan density matrix

The Design and Access Statement submitted with the proposal states that in accordance with Policy 3.2 of the London Plan (2016) and Policy 3.4 of the Ealing Development Management DPD (2013) this site is classified as ‘Central’ due to its location in a Metropolitan Town Centre. The density range guidance for this site is therefore 215-405 units per hectare and 350-1100 habitable rooms per hectare.

This site is approximately 0.20 of a hectare. The proposal is to build 120 units. This gives a density of 100/20 x 120 which comes to 600 units per hectare, almost 50% higher than the maximum density specified in the London Plan.

Whilst the Council and/or developers may argue that the London Plan is only for guidance it does clearly state ‘development proposals which compromise (the matrix) should be resisted.’ We believe the Council should resist this proposal as its density clearly compromises the standards laid down in the London Plan.

2.Height

With up to 11 storeys at the front on The Broadway and up to 15-storeys at the back along Singapore Road this planned building is significantly higher than any around it. Whilst the architects have made some design and height alterations following last year’s public consultation the proposed building still dominates the skyline. It remains out-of-keeping with the size and height of the new buildings that have established the current standards along this stretch of the Broadway – Pershore House, Rosemoor House, Hyde House and the Holiday Inn Express hotel.

3.Cumulative impact of high rise blocks on Singapore Road

Commenting on the previous Green Man Lane Estate proposal, the then Mayor and Deputy Mayor expressed serious concerns about the scale and massing of the proposed buildings along Singapore Road. Particular concerns, as listed within the report (ref: PDU/2553a/01) included the size and overbearing scale of the elevations facing Singapore Road, the articulation of the building through the massing, and the scale of the building when viewed from Broadway, along with the buildings’ visual relationship with the town centre.

https://www.london.gov.uk/sites/default/files/PAWS/media_id_166569/green_man_lane_estate_report.updated%20pdf.pdf page 9

Adding an even higher building of 15-storeys on Singapore Road simply further increases these concerns and the impact on the many hundreds of residents already living and soon-to-be-living along this road.

4.Design

The design is out of context with the existing and planned buildings on either side. The initial design has been amended following last year’s public consultation.  This current design is claimed to be a modern interpretation of the building’s original art-deco façade.  The art-deco style of building is a significant visual feature of this end of the West Ealing Broadway with the two Catalyst Housing Assn owned buildings either side of St James Avenue and 154A The Broadway (above the Juniper shop) which had to keep its art-deco style when the Council gave permission for an additional floor to be added.  The design for this new building lacks the subtlety of the next door building Rosemoor House which has incorporated an art-deco style frontage on The Broadway in a much more muted and less brash style.

The proposed balconies on the Broadway side are very unlikely to be used by residents for sitting out on given the high level of air pollution along this very busy road.  From past experience the balconies will be used for storage and hanging out washing. This will make the frontage look a mess as has happened with the Rosemoor House next door.

5.Loss of art-deco facade

The proposed demolition of the existing building will mean the loss of the iconic art-deco façade. This façade is almost certainly the most recognisable feature of the West Ealing high street.

In 2013 at a public meeting of the West Ealing Centre Neighbourhood Forum local stakeholders voted to preserve this 1926 icon. Over 1,000 have signed a petition to preserve the façade. You can add your signature at:

www.wecnf.org/save-our-heritage-petition/

6.Social impact

The cumulative effect of all the recent and proposed housing developments along and close to the Broadway in West Ealing may raise significant social problems for the area. In the last few years this stretch of The Broadway backing on to Singapore Road has seen, or will see, an extraordinary number of high-rise housing developments –  the Green Man Lane Estate, The Appleton (BHS site), Rosemoor House, Pershore House, and Hyde House, let alone the developments that may be proposed at the recently purchased Sainsbury’s site. This level of development raises the serious prospect of bringing with it serious cultural and social problems associated with this type of densely packed housing.   West Ealing has long-suffered from serious anti-social behaviour, much of which centres on these new housing developments,  and this and similar developments threaten to undo all the effort and hard work put in to tackling anti-social behaviour by the Council, police, housing associations,faith groups and residents’ groups.

 

Template letter for objections

Katie Crosbie

Planning Dept

Ealing Council

Perceval House

14-16 Uxbridge Road

Ealing W5 2HL

 

Date:

 

Dear Sir/Madam

96-102 The Broadway, West Ealing.   Application Reference: 182180FUL

I wish to object to this application for the following reasons:

1.Falls short of  Ealing Council’s  target of 50% affordable housing

Ealing Council in its Housing and Homeless Strategy 2014-19 has as one of its key outcomes to ‘Ensure 50% of new homes are affordable housing’. Plans for this site are for a total of 35% affordable housing and not 50%.

2.Exceeds London Plan density matrix

The density range guidance for this site is 215-405 units per hectare and 350-1100 habitable rooms per hectare.

This site comes to 600 units per hectare, almost 50% higher than the maximum density specified in the London Plan.

3.Height

With up to 11 storeys at the front on The Broadway and up to 15-storeys at the back along Singapore Road this planned building is significantly higher than any around it. The proposed building will dominate the skyline opening the door for yet higher developments in the future. It remains out-of-keeping with the size and height of the new buildings that have established the current standards along this stretch of the Broadway – Pershore House, Rosemoor House, Hyde House and the Holiday Inn Express hotel.

4.Cumulative impact of high rise blocks on Singapore Road

Commenting on the previous Green Man Lane Estate proposal, the then Mayor and Deputy Mayor expressed serious concerns about the scale and massing of the proposed buildings along Singapore Road. Particular concerns included the size and overbearing scale of the elevations facing Singapore Road.

Adding an even higher building of 15-storeys on Singapore Road simply further increases these concerns and the impact on the many hundreds of residents already living and soon-to-be-living along this road.

5.Design

The design is out of context with the existing and planned buildings on either side. The art-deco style of building is a significant visual feature of this end of the West Ealing Broadway.  The design for this new building lacks the subtlety of the next door building Rosemoor House which has incorporated an art-deco style frontage on The Broadway in a much more muted and less brash style.

6.Loss of art-deco facade

The proposed demolition of the existing building will mean the loss of the iconic art-deco façade. This façade is almost certainly the most recognisable architectural feature of the West Ealing high street.

7.Social impact

The cumulative effect of all the recent and proposed housing developments along and close to the Broadway in West Ealing may raise significant social problems for the area. In the last few years this stretch of The Broadway backing on to Singapore Road has seen, or will see, an extraordinary number of high-rise housing developments –  the Green Man Lane Estate, The Appleton (BHS site), let alone the developments that may be proposed at the recently purchased Sainsbury’s site. This level of development raises the serious prospect of bringing with it serious social problems associated with this type of densely packed housing.

Yours faithfully

 

 

 

 

 

Crime and anti-social behaviour rates drop in West Ealing PSPO area – notes from WEN’s public meeting 26th April

Notes from West Ealing Neighbours’ Annual General Meeting on Thursday 26th April 2018 at St John’s Church, Mattock Lane, West Ealing

Review of past activities

David Highton, chair, opened the meeting with a brief review of some of West Ealing Neighbours’ activities over the past couple of years:

  • Following the cancellation of the 2015 SoundBite Festival In Dean Gardens due to an overnight incident in the park, WEN took the initiative to try to start to tackle anti-social behaviour. It brought together local stakeholders such as housing associations, faith groups, residents’ groups, councillors, council officials and police in a series of regular meetings. With financial support a plan to redesign Dean Gardens was commissioned. This plan has been incorporated in to the new Liveable Neighbourhood project for West Ealing funded by TfL.
  • This group supported the introduction of the Public Space Protection Order which came into force in April 2017 and which has helped reduce anti-social behaviour in West Ealing.
  • WEN has been on the working group for the co-working business hub due to open later this year in St James Ave.
  • The Abundance project continues and contributes £500-£1000 a year to WEN’s funds. The projects produce includes apple juice, chutneys and more and the main outlet is Cheddar Deli in Northfiled Ave. Thanks to Elizabeth Highton for all her hard work on this.
  • In December we started looking after the planters/seats in Melbourne Ave and have cleaned them, replanted some and now maintain them on a regular basis. We have offered to look after the flower beds planned for the pigeon-infested patch of grass on the corner of Leeland Terrace and Melbourne Ave.
  • We continue to help put on the annual Soundite Festival and Christmas Fair.
  • Diane Gill and others manage our successful Facebook group which has about 4,500 members.
  • The bookswap shelf is still active in West Ealing station
  • Jane Humphreys runs the monthly book club meetings in the Star and Anchor on the last Wednesday of each month.
  • The 2017 accounts show a bank balance of nearly £7,000. Some of these reserves could be spent for the benefit of the local community and this is an item later on the agenda.

Election of the committee

David Highton, Eric Leach, Diane Gill, Andrew Cazalet, Jane Humphreys were all willing to stand again for the committee and Laura Cross was willing to stand as a new committee member. These nominations were proposed and seconded and accepted by the meeting.

David noted that there were a number of other people interested in getting involved and we will follow up with them after the meeting

Difficulty of dealing with the Council over claiming benefits

Tony Eley talked briefly about his own experiences of how difficult it was to claim housing benefit now everything is done online. He asked the audience to raise this with candidates for the local election and what they could do to help improve this very difficult situation for many older people, non-English speakers and residents not able to access or use the internet.

Public Space Protection Order

Abbi Shaw, Safer Communities Officer gave some statistics about the impact of the PSPO:

As part of the analysis undertaken on the West Ealing PSPO, crime and ASB data from April – October 2017 was reviewed in comparison with the same period from the previous year (prior to the introduction of the PSPO).

The analysis showed that, compared to a borough wide reduction in overall crime of 5% during April-October 2017, crime in the PSPO wards is down 29%.  Particularly striking for me are the significant reductions in criminal damage (45% compared to 9% borough wide) and drug offences (77% compared to 3% borough wide).

Reductions in ASB, violence and sex offences and public order are all significantly better than those across the borough too.

Wider analysis was also done around other emergency services data, which showed a 24% reduction in alcohol related calls to London Ambulance Service compared to the same period the previous year.

She then took questions covering problems about the PSPO displacing anti-social behaviour from West Ealing to Northfields, Hanwell and Ealing Broadway. As a result, the Council is working on a borough-wide PSPO with a consultation likely in December.

In reply to a question about the problem of reporting incidents on 101 she said changes were likely to be made to this service. But residents could contact her to report incidents and these would be logged and investigated.

West Ealing Business Inprovement District

Anna Elliott BID Manager explained about how the BID works in West Ealing. Busineses with over a£10,000 annual rateable value contribute 1.07% of the rateable value to the BID. There are some 400 levy payers.  All the money raised is used to provide services and other benefits to local businesses such as a waste collection service, pest control services and a wide range of publicity and promotional activities such as the recent and successful children’s craft activities at Easter.

The BID’s first 5 year period ends next year so she is leading the campaign for the ballot in Novemebr when businesses will vote yes or no to renewing the BID for a further 5 years.

She explained a new BID initiative which is a map of the West Ealing shopping centre showing key businesses, cultural events and more on one side and a list of shops by category on the other.

West Ealing Liveable Neighbourhood project

David Highton spoke briefly about this £8.6m TfL funded project. It has only just started and the most useful information is in the FAQs handout which everyone should have.  The plan includes a redesign of Dean Gardens (as mentioned earlier) and a range of measures to improve the area along and both sides of the Uxbridge Rd.  The improvements are aimed at making it more attractive for pedestrians and cyclists along with improving the air quality. WEN is on the stakeholder group which will meet regularly and help shape and guide the final plans.

Concerns were raised by a number of people about TfL not being car friendly and this could affect elderly and disabled people who need to use their cars to come to West Ealing. Also, concerns about wasteful ideas which may lead to unnecessary changes to pavements and Dean Gardens. Another question raised about ensuring pedestrians are properly considered in the plans.

One key role for West Ealing Neighbours is to give maximum publicity to this project and the plans so as many residents as possible know about them and are able to put forward their view and ideas.

West Ealing Centre Neighbourhood Forum (WECNF)

Eric Leach, Chair of WECNF, talked through the group’s plans for West Ealing which will go to vote alongside the local election on 3rd May. If over 50% of both residents and businesses who vote are in favour then the plans will become part of the formal planning decision process. The plan can be seen at the local library and on their website www.wecnf.org

Using our surplus funds

David Highton explained that WEN has almost £7,000 in the bank. We don’t need to hold this amount so are there any ideas as to how some of it could be spent to benefit the local community?  For example, WEN has spent about £3-400 on the improving the planters in Melbourne Ave. We could, for example, take on planting the flower beds that are due for inclusion in the Council’s redesign of the patch of grass by Sainsbury’s.

Two ideas were suggested: we could fund live music in St James Ave as part of making it a more inviting and attractive space and we could hold more public meetings as there are now only two ward forums a year.

The committee will consider these and any other suggestions and report back on its decisions.

Any Other Business

The meeting closed at 9pm and David thanked the committee for its work and support.

 

Tackling anti-social behaviour in West Ealing – WEN public meeting Thurs 26th April 7.30pm

Tackling anti-social behaviour in West Ealing

Public meeting on Thursday 26th April  7.30-9pm in the lounge at St John’s Church in Mattock Lane

Come and join us to hear about some of the major projects happening in West Ealing:

Tackling anti-social behaviour

It’s just a year since the Public Space Protection Order came in to force in the centre of West Ealing. How effective has it been?  Do you think it’s resulted in less anti-social behaviour or is it just the same as ever?  Come and hear the Council’s Safer Communities Team report back on the PSPO’s first year.

Making West Ealing more attractive to shoppers

Do you shop in West Ealing?  Anna Elliott the new chief executive of the West Ealing Business improvement District has some ambitions plans to make it a nicer place to shop.  Hear what plans she has to attract more shoppers.

Liveable Neighbourhoods –transforming West Ealing

Ealing Council has won £8.6 million from TfL’s Liveable Neighbourhoods fund to improve West Ealing town centre and its surrounding streets to make conditions better for walking, cycling and public transport. It’s early days but come and find out a bit more about this major scheme.

Electing a new WEN management committee

We need people to join our management committee.  It doesn’t have to take a lot of your time. If you’re interested do please email WEN chair David Highton to find out what’s involved – westealingneighbours@gmail.com

We will also report back on our activities in 2016 and 2017 along with an update on West Ealing Centre Neighbourhood Forum’s plan covering central West Ealing which goes to a vote Thursday 3rd May.

Website: www.westealingneighbours.org.uk

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/groups/124290860921562/

Email: westealingneighbours@gmail.com

Hunt the Easter Bunny and Easter Egg-stravaganza – free family fun in West Ealing this weekend

Lots of activities for families in West Ealing this weekend:

Easter Arts & Crafts in Melbourne Avenue Friday to Sunday 11am-5pm

  • make an Easter Bunny mask
  • paint your own Easter eggs
  • Easter colouring

Plus a chance to win a super Easter Egg.

Also, the BID Bunny Easter Trail.  Pick up your free map from Wilko and follow the trail to find the Easter pictures and collect your prize at the end of the trail. Runs from 24th March to 7th April 9.30am – 5pm in West Ealing town centre.

Look here for more details.

Both events funded by the In West Ealing (West Ealing Business Improvement District)