Green Goddess: Council planners recommend bar for Blackheath Standard bank

Green Goddess render
Councillors will decide whether the bar should go ahead next Tuesday

(Update: The planning meeting was postponed to Tuesday 19 October)

Greenwich Council planners are recommending that councillors approve a planned bar in a former bank at Blackheath Standard – but two influential local groups want the idea thrown out.

In March, The Charlton Champion revealed that Plumstead-based Common Rioters brewery wanted to turn the former Barclays branch, which closed in January, into a “beer café”, which would brew much of its own beer.

The brewery’s application to open The Green Goddess will go before the council’s Greenwich area planning committee next Tuesday. Council officers say that the plan “would bring a vacant commercial building back into use and for a purpose, which is appropriate for a designated retail area”.

Common Rioters’ founders Stephen and Maryann O’Connor have been testing out their ideas with a weekend pop-up pub with the same name at Charlton House. Their brewery’s name comes from the Plumstead Common rioters, whose revolt in 1876 saved the open space from being destroyed by a developer.

While 42 messages of support were received, there were 16 objections, including from the Westcombe Society and Blackheath Society amenity groups.

The Westcombe Society said a bar with no kitchen “may lead to an increase in anti- social behaviour outside residential properties” while there would be “smell and waste from the brewing process”.

Meanwhile, the Blackheath Society said “a ‘wet led’ pub without food seems to be designed to encourage pub crawls and potentially excessive alcohol consumption”.

The group also claimed that the bar would “encourage driving to the site, but as there is no car parking proposed this will lead to more congestion and nuisance in neighbouring streets”.

Another objection from a member of the public claimed that there was “no need for additional commercial activity at the Standard”.

There were also concerns about plans to allow tables outside, but a large fence would be put in place to protect the bar’s next-door neighbour on Vanbrugh Park. Outdoor drinking would not be permitted after 9pm.

Two cycle parking racks would be provided for staff. Transport for London had asked for two racks to be provided for customers, but Greenwich planning officers refused, saying “the provision of cycle spaces for customers (short stay) is not, as ‘drinking and driving’, whether it is in a car or a bicycle is not safe”.

The proposed opening hours would be 10am to 11pm seven days a week, with a midnight closedown on Fridays and Saturdays in December.

Work is already under way on the building to convert the bank’s offices into a two-bedroom flat; there is already a flat on the upper floor.

A final decision is due to be made at Woolwich Town Hall on Tuesday.


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Vote now: Parks, gardens and a flyover mural could get Growth Fund cash

Maryon Wilson Park
A project for benches in Maryon Wilson Park is seeking £4,602

Projects across Charlton could be in line for council money from the Greenwich Neighbourhood Growth Fund – with residents given the chance to vote for which schemes get money.

The cash comes from a levy on developers, and £50,000 is available across Charlton, Woolwich and part of Kidbrooke.

Unlike previous GNGF votes, any resident in any part of the borough can vote for any project, with final decisions to be taken at area meetings with ward councillors after the poll.

Projects in Charlton – and very close by – up for funding include a plan for a new playground and picnic area in Charlton Park, benches for Maryon Wilson Park, work to restore the Long Borders at Charlton House a mural under the Woolwich Road flyover.

Local projects you might want to support are:

Area 3: Friends of Charlton Park / £27,051
Proposal to provide Charlton Park Playground with a new picnic area with shady trees, a drinking fountain and extra picnic benches that will bring new life to a run-down corner of the play park. Local families want to see the playground transformed to a landscaped natural adventure that sparks the imagination of children. This space will provide park users somewhere to sit and share picnics in natural shade on hot summer days.

Area 3: Friends of Maryon & Maryon Wilson Parks / £4,602
Installation of two picnic benches adjacent to the Triangle as a meeting point for the community and for parents and carers.

Area 3: Charlton & Blackheath Amateur Horticultural Society / £5,000
Revival of Charlton House Long Borders Garden. Recreation of the Long Borders area for wider community use to include plant and creative fairs, farmer’s markets, outdoor theatre and seasonal events.

Area 3: Luke’s Parochial Church Council / £11,051
Enhancement of the churchyard, highlighting historical features, install attractive and imaginative planting, providing benches to facilitate reflection, enhance safety by levelling the path. Eliminating trip hazards.

Area 3: St Thomas, Old Charlton PCC / £10,000
Renovation of the St Thomas’ Upper Hall for the wider community’s use as a hub. To include re-plastering, painting, recovering of the floor, creating a more welcoming and comforting space.

Area 3: Clockhouse Community Centre with New Charlton Community Centre (NCCA) / £47,227
To make significant building improvements the New Charlton Community Centre (NCCA) to the house and hall (including the installation of a disabled bathroom, redecoration of the hall and to clear and install an all-weather surface externally to improve the external areas to ensure the NCCA is further fit for purpose to serve the local community. To additionally replace some dilapidated kitchen equipment in the Clockhouse Community Centre to significantly improve the services offered by the Community Cafe.

Projects close by… (Area 2 covers the Greenwich Peninsula so has £140,000 on offer)

Area 2: Montessori Education for Autism, Westcombe Hill / £5,617
Erect a 6′ x 6′ wooden greenhouse and a 6’ x 6’ wooden potting shed to provide enhanced learning opportunities for children with autism and other disabilities.

Area 2: Invicta Primary School / £65,000
The creation of a bespoke play space and cedar clad meeting room (capacity: 15 adults) to provide an outdoor library for children, music lessons, staff meetings, and a conference space for community hire.

Area 2: Aldeburgh and Fearon Streets Neighbourhood Watch / £7,500
To improve the area under the Angerstein flyover by commissioning a mural that would represent some aspects of the history of the area, as well as its reality today.

You can see all projects and vote on the council website.


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Want to see The Green Goddess beer café come to Blackheath Standard? Here’s how to show support

Green Goddess render
How the bar could look

Drinkers who want to support a Plumstead brewery’s plans to turn a former bank at Blackheath Standard into a “beer café” can now show their support to Greenwich Council.

As The Charlton Champion revealed last month, Common Rioters Brewery wants to turn the former Barclays into The Green Goddess, which will also provide it with a place to brew its own beers.

Documents submitted to council planners reveal plans to turn the old basement vault into a bottle cellar and tasting area, with the main bar and brewery on the ground floor. Separate plans have been submitted to convert the first floor offices of the bank into housing; there is already a flat on the top floor.

The building would also need a premises licence to operate as a bar – for now, the planning application indicates that it would close by 11.30pm.

“Education is a core theme of the concept – It’s planned to hold occasional brewery tours and ‘be a brewer’ events as well as sommelier led tasting and training sessions,” the application says. It’s anticipated that an apprentice (covering all aspects of brewing and bar management) will be taken on in due course to help open access to the industry.”

Full details can be seen on Greenwich Council’s planning website (or search for reference 21/0799/F), where residents can also leave comments before 22 April.

In the meantime, Common Rioters are opening a pop-up bar at Charlton House from 12 April to show off their offerings to locals.


PLEASE SUPPORT THE CHARLTON CHAMPION

We tell the SE7 stories you won’t read elsewhere. We can’t do it without your help.
– Please tell us about your news and events
– Become a monthly supporter at presspatron.com/charltonchampion
– Donate to our running costs at paypal.me/charltonchampion