Southwark Council is considering splitting the Leathermarket JMB area into two separate areas as part of the development of Neighbourhood Planning in the Bermondsey area.
The Council are still considering the boundary for the neighbourhood plan that will cover the Bermondsey area between Borough High Street and Tower Bridge Road (which includes the JMB area). We have been told that Council’s Planning Policy team will be putting together a recommendation to councillors for a decision in December 2013.
The Planning Team have told the JMB that they consider the area north of Long Lane (which include the Kipling Estate, Hamilton Square, Lockyer Estate, Crosby Row, Tyers Estate, White’s Grounds Estate and Tanner House – as well as parts of the Tabard Gardens Estates) is fundamentally different to the area South of Long Lane (including the Lawson Estate, Elim Estate, Meakin Estate, Decima Street, Archdale House, Mendam houses and Peveril House – as well as the rest of the Tabard Gardens estate and the Haddonhall Estate).
Some groups and organisations have already argued that the area north of Long Lane is more ‘mixed use and business’ than the ‘primarily residential’ to the south and that people living south of Long Lane don’t see themselves in the same community as people in the north. The council officers have said they are sympathetic to this argument and haven’t heard people make the argument for these areas being together
What happens next.
The JMB will be strongly objecting to this approach, because we know that our residents are all part of a single community, coming together to improve our homes, estates and wider environment.
We will argue:
- It would be wrong to split the Leathermarket JMB community in two as we identify as a single community (in the same way it would be wrong seem wrong to split the Tabard Gardens Estate in two)
- It should be for the people themselves to decide their community and how they relate together
- People living in Leathermarket JMB estates south of Long Lane look to and identify London Bridge and the area around the JMB Office and not to the Elephant, Old Kent Road or anywhere else
- New council-rent housing is a pressing need for tenants on JMB estates. Work is currently underway across the Leathermarket area to co-ordinate new homes, through Leathermarket CBS. This sort of thing is fundamental to neighbourhood planning and it would be foolish to divide this area in two.
- Neighbourhood planning is about taking a structured approach to the whole area, not just reinforcing any existing pockets of division. So it is important to ensure the mix of organisations together within a single area so benefits can spread across the whole area, with business gaining from working with residents and vice versa. For example the work we’ve done with Team London Bridge and the business community on the Whites Grounds and Tyers Estates shows the value and benefits of keeping residential and business together.
The JMB will be shortly be sending its view to the planning policy team – but it is important that as many JMB residents as possible send their views in to the planning team, so they know how the community feels. (We understand the team will still look at comments, despite what it says on the Southwark Council website).
To give your views to the Planning Policy team, you can:
or write for free to:
Southwark Council Planning policy,
Chief Executive’s Department,
London, SE1P 5LX