Trinity Park: We’ve decoded the bizarre consultation for rebuilt Morris Walk Estate

Danny Thorpe and Lovells execs
Greenwich Council leader Danny Thorpe (second left) on site for the start of demolition at Morris Walk during the summer

A new consultation about what will replace the Morris Walk Estate has been launched. However, you’re unlikely to have heard about it until this week, even though it launched last Friday, and it’s probably the strangest consultation we’ve ever come across – and we’ve seen a few in our time.

As a public service, we’ve taken the videos from it and are hosting them here so you can take part without having to flail around with a smartphone.

Demolition work is taking place on the Morris Walk Estate so it can be replaced by a new development, Trinity Park. The estate went up quickly in the mid-1960s, and it’s coming down quickly too – Denmark House, the tower block next to Maryon Park, has all but gone in just four weeks. The demolition teams could have been even speedier, but we’re hearing great care is being taken to avoid disturbing the neighbours. So far, so good.

The development is to be built by Lovell, which has turned the notorious Connaught Estate in Woolwich into Trinity Walk. It plans to replace the 562 homes of Morris Walk (all built for council housing) with 768 homes – 35 per cent will be “affordable”. The planning definition of “affordable” differs from the dictionary definition: a previous planning permission saw this break down to 25 per cent social rent and 10 per cent shared ownership, although a new planning application is on its way. We’d expect the social rent to be London Affordable Rent, which is half market rent – slightly higher than Greenwich Council rents, which are about 40 per cent market rents and among the cheapest in London.

Lovell will also demolish the dilapidated Maryon Road and Maryon Grove estates in due course; these are being handled separately.

Lovell leaflet
Lovell’s consultation leaflet – good luck with that

Lovell’s latest consultation began on Friday. It lasts a week. While other developers have made efforts to keep in touch with us about major schemes in SE7, Lovell didn’t tell us about this. It does say it told 290 surrounding residents, however, and left leaflets in locations including New Charlton Community Centre, St Thomas Church, Windrush Primary School and Time Court care home.

The consultation involves you having to point your mobile phone at QR codes which then bring up a series of videos. It’s not very accessible, to say the least – heaven knows what they made of it in the care home.

So we’ve got hold of the videos, uploaded them to our own site, and are presenting them here ourselves, right here on The Charlton Champion.

Lovell says it is unable to hold a physical consultation because of the pandemic, but others are making better jobs of it – see this Greenwich Council consultation into new housing in Eltham, or Aitch Group’s plans for Eastmoor Street.

Anyway, make yourself a cuppa, sit back, and find out more about what’s planned. (If you’re in a hurry, skip to video 6.)

By the way, we can’t change the music. Sorry.

Video 1: A brief introduction. You can probably skip this, to be honest.

Video 2: A description of the dismantling and demolition work. Morris North = north of the railway line. Morris South = south of it.

Video 3: A description of past consultation events. Local people like the public transport and green space; hate the fact they’re living next to crumbling estates with antisocial behaviour, flytipping and parked cars. They would like a small supermarket and for the development to fit in with its neighbours.

Video 4: A description of the area. Yes, you know it, but it’s all about context.

Video 5: Now it’s an introduction to the masterplan. Odd to claim that one of the downsides of the Morris Walk Estate was that it didn’t have enough private housing, but there you go. However, this promises a mix of private, shared ownership and “affordable” homes (at least they’re separated the last two out) and pledges the railway will be used to unite rather than divide the community. Taller buildings will be placed nearer the A206, smaller buildings at the Charlton end.

Video 6: The interesting bits begin. Plans for Morris North: 304 new homes (296 flats, eight houses) with blocks of up to 13 storeys. 144 car parking spaces, mostly underground. Public courtyards with green spaces, and views to the parks and across the Thames (from the 13th floor, presumably).

Video 7: Morris South plans: 462 homes (309 flats, 153 houses) with blocks of up to six storeys. Houses to fit in with their neighbours on Maryon Road and Woodland Terrace. A new pedestrian street, Maryon Park Avenue, will lead right from the park towards Woolwich Dockyard. 288 car parking spaces, to be designed so it doesn’t feel there are cars everywhere.

Video 8: What happens next. Please send your feedback and work goes on to finalise the planning applications.

Here are the exhibition boards to download, if the text on the videos is small to read.

However, they don’t include the renders of what’s proposed, so we’ve taken some screenshots. Much of the work closer to Charlton looks decent. It’s a shame the mess of a consultation lets it down.

Lovell Trinity Park render
The view from Maryon Park – where Denmark House stood until recently
Trinity Park render
The view along Maryon Park Avenue
Lovell render
Looking up Prospect Vale
Roughly where Woodland Terrace, Charlton, meets Prospect Vale, Woolwich. New housing planned for old tower block site
Lovell render
Looking along the railway line between Morris North and Morris South from Maryon Park
Morris North render
The view from Woolwich Church Street
Trinity Park
An overview of the whole development

One you’ve watched all that, you can send feedback using this form. Closing date is this Thursday, 30 October – we’d have told you about this earlier if we knew.

Please tell them we sent you.


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Charlton Park and Maryon Park to get improvements from Greenwich Council

Charlton Park
Charlton Park is to see some council investment

Both Charlton Park and Maryon Park are to benefit from a Greenwich Council fund aimed at rejuvenating the borough’s parks.

Charlton Park will have its playground improved while sports changing rooms will also be refurbished as part of the programme, the first tranche of spending from a £1m fund set aside by the town hall.

Councillors on the cabinet, the borough’s main decision-making body, will discuss the plans in a meeting on Wednesday. However, there is no breakdown of just how much is being spent in the programme, which involves 11 parks.

Charlton Park will see money put towards the modernisation and redecoration of sports changing rooms, playground improvements, new park furniture and basic repairs. There is also funding for a wildlife meadow to the east of the park.

Maryon Park is due to see basic repairs, new park furniture as well as improvements to its ball court and its playground. It will also get new trees and wildflower margins.

There is no new funding for Maryon Wilson Park and Hornfair Park. (See full list.)

More than 2,600 people responded to a council survey about how they wanted to see the money spent. The most common request for Charlton Park was for additional toilets and maintenance as well as picnic area improvements, more bins and floodlights in the skatepark. Users of Maryon Wilson Park, which is not getting funding, called for a café and toilets, as well as work on its pathways and steps. (See full list.)

The report to councillors says: “Cafés and kiosks were also identified as important but creation of new café and kiosks would use a large proportion of the £1m budget and it was considered more important to improve the condition of the current facilities before adding new [ones].”


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What do you value by the river? Tell the council your views on Charlton’s riverside

Cory boatyard, Charlton
The Cory boatyard is an important part of the area’s heritage

What do you like down by the river? Greenwich Council is asking people for their views on what they value about the two new conservation areas on the Charlton riverside – helping protect the area’s heritage as developers eye up the industrial land for thousands of new homes.

Two conservation areas – Charlton Riverside, and Thames Barrier and Bowater Road – were created two years ago as part of plans to make sure the area’s history wasn’t completely wiped out when the construction companies moved in, as has happened in other riverside areas of London.

Now Greenwich is consulting on the details – area appraisals – to work out what is of value to the area and what isn’t.

Places like the old Cory barge works and the modern homes at Vaizey’s Wharf are cited as having a positive impact on the area – but the old Watercoombe House office block on Anchor and Hope Lane and the McDonald’s on Woolwich Church Street are seen as negatives.

The council has prepared two detailed documents which are worth a look if you’re interested in the area – even if you don’t want to respond to the consultation – as they are full of details about the history of the buildings and their uses.

After the consultation, proposals will go to councillors on planning committees before being considered by the council’s ruling cabinet.

To see the documents and take part in the consultation, visit the Greenwich Council website.


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