The developer behind plans to build 771 homes off Anchor and Hope Lane has appealed to planning inspectors to overturn Sadiq Khan’s rejection of the scheme.
Rockwell’s proposals, the first to emerge on the Charlton Riverside development area, were bitterly opposed by residents in Atlas and Derrick Gardens who feared their homes would be overlooked by the 10-storey blocks planned for the site of a trading estate.
Greenwich Council’s main planning committee rejected the scheme in July 2018, with one councillor saying the scheme was “like Stalingrad”, despite the council’s own officers recommending they approve the scheme. Then the mayor of London overturned Greenwich’s decision a month later, “calling in” the proposal to decide himself. City Hall’s planning officers recommended he approve a slightly amended scheme, but the mayor made the surprise decision to reject the scheme himself after a hearing in January.
Now Rockwell is putting its scheme’s neighbours through a third round of the fight by appealling to the Planning Inspectorate, where an inspector will decide on the development after a detailed public hearing.
Once again, residents are being asked to submit comments on the scheme – visit the Planning Inspectorate’s website and enter case reference number 3233585.
Rockwell’s appeal is against Khan’s decision, not Greenwich Council’s. At the time, Khan said: “This is an underutilised, brownfield site in an opportunity area and very accessible. It is well-connected and in an area capable of accommodating growth. It is precisely the kind of site that we need to bring forward in order to create vibrant and active places, ensuring a compact and well-functioning city.
“However, I am clear that we must deliver good growth, not growth at any cost, where people have more of a say and don’t feel excluded from the process. I have listened carefully to the concerns of residents and considered the substantial amount of work done on the Charlton Riverside Masterplan. I consider that this is the wrong development for the site.”
He urged Rockwell to “go back to the drawing board, in partnership with the community, the council and the GLA, to come up with a scheme that delivers on the strong ambitions we all share for the future of Charlton Riverside”.
But Rockwell have instead decided to challenge the decision. They may have been fortified by Greenwich’s Council’s approval of 10-storey blocks at Victoria Way – just outside the masterplan area – in January 2018 without any explanation to objectors, a decision that was later ratified by the mayor.
Rockwell’s scheme is one of five for the Charlton riverside, designated an “opportunity area” for redevelopment by City Hall. The other four are:
The other four schemes, from west to east, are:
- 1,500 homes from developer Montreaux on the industrial estate containing the Stone Foundries plant behind the Stone Lake retail park. The land has just been sold and the scheme has not yet entered planning.
- 500 homes are planned by developer Komoto at what it calls Flint Glass Wharf, the former Johnsen and Jorgensen glassworks which closed in 1981, between the Tarmac works and the Thames Barrier;
- Hyde Housing is planning to build 1,250 homes over eight years on various plots of land, including the Westminster Waste recycling depot at Maybanks Wharf. A planning application is expected within weeks.
- U+I plans 500 homes on the old Siemens glassworks site on the Charlton/Woolwich border, along with a co-working hub for local businesses and space for light industry. A planning application is also expected within weeks.
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