Manor Avenue Nursery Rejected

The highly controversial proposal to convert the United Services Club on Manor Avenue in to nursery was rejected by Lewisham Concil's planning committee last night.

Reader Reg writes:

At the Lewisham Town Hall Civic Centre the planned nursery at 60 Manor Avenue rejected.

Chair of committee, Councillor John Francsois Paschoud (Labour), fought long and hard for conditions to be set that would allow the nursery to go ahead. He wanted a nursery at Manor Avenue.He was challenged by Councillor Cathy Priddey (Lib Dem Party) and Councillor Sue Luxton (Green Party).

Priddey was not at all happy that relevant information was not forthcoming from developer Zoom Nurseries. Priddey also felt that the nursery would impact on neighbours, and that this she also could not allow.

Councillor John Paschoud repeatedly attempted to push the decision towards a resolution that would allow a nursery. It was pointed out by Councillor Cath Priddey that a nursery had recently been turned down at 42 Beadnell Road, Forest Hill, and that this may be relevant. Councillor Priddey was later joined in the challenge by Councillor Sue Luxton (Green Party) who pressed hard for answers on several issues, as she has done since the application. During the debate Luxton also expressed concerns about getting rid of a cycle track and felling a long-established tree.

41 comments:

Anonymous said...

Hurrah for common sense. Good luck to MA residents - and well done!

Tyrwhitt Michael said...

I hope for Manor Avenue's sake it doesn't become a disused derelict mess like the Talbot has on my Road.

Not I should add helped by the two closed shops on the corner, the closed down Stone factory and the long time empty No 8 - now at least occupied - although still boarded up.

Someone tidy up Tyrwhitt please.

Anonymous said...

It's better than the telly!

Headhunter said...

Great news! I wonder if there'll now be a long drawn out appeals process with some disconnected court in Greenwich overturning Lewisham BC's decision, as with the strip joint in New Cross. Hopefully not.

I doubt that place will remain empty for long, if as we are told, Lewishim is screaming out for residential accommodation, then the logical use for a building like that, built as a house in Victorian times on a pleasant leafy road, is errr, as a house not a commercial establishment.

The Cat Man said...

Quite - roll on the applications for mental health 'community' health units and residential 'half way houses'!

Headhunter said...

There's already an application in for a mental trauma (read care in the community for people with behavioural problems) just round the corner on Ashby Road. That's the next one to kybosh....

Littlejohn said...

Yes, no doubt to be packed with gay homeless asylum seeking gypsies - coming over here, eating our swans!

The Cat Man said...

Are the neo-left brockley middle class still insisting on the words 'pikey' being racist or 'honey' being sexist?

I'm still amazed... cue jokes about gypsies

Tamsin said...

The only bitter joke about the gypsies is the way their sufferings under the Nazi regime have been largely overlooked by history.

Anonymous said...

Never mind - Ladywell did have plans (or maybe still has) to house some travellers/gypsies in a special council-built travellers theme park - thrilling rides on the back of their trucks not obligatory - Brockleyites eat your hearts out...

Littlejohn said...

"Are the neo-left brockley middle class still insisting on the words 'pikey' being racist or 'honey' being sexist?"

I know - and as for those benders getting their (pink, frilly) knickers in a twist over a few harmless kiddy fiddler gags!
PC gone mad I tells ya!

Anonymous said...

Councillor Priddey gets my vote!

Clare said...

I'll repeat what I said over at Dean's Green Blog about this. I live next door to a nursery. It's completely within a residential area. It doesn't have an acoustic fence, just the normal walls of the garden. It has spaces for 32 only though.

We don't have much problem, just occasionally need to get the manager to remind parents to park considerately when dropping off, but many people walk to drop off anyway.

I think there are lots of worse things a building could become. We also have the added advantage of no noise in the evenings/weekends as no one is there.

Don't knock it!

Headhunter said...

And thanks to Sue Luxton for her support

Headhunter said...

You have a point Clare, but I'd prefer it as a residential property than a 64 place nursery (+ staff)with associated traffic problems every morning and afternoon. Granted some of those people may walk but you can bet that many wouldn't

Clare said...

I agree, Headhunter, a residential use would probably be preferable and 64 places sounds a lot. I guess I'd be less keen on our neighbours if they had 64 places rather than 32! A lot of ours do walk though.

I'd just be concerned that you'll end up with something less desirable.

Danja said...

I seem to recall from the sale details that someone posted a link to, that most of the back garden is covered with a big hall?

If that's the case, the likelihood of it returning to resi use seems pretty small.

The Cat Man said...

Is it? criky, that is shocking.

Honestly, gardens in the UK should be kept. Its our country's greatest natural asset.

Headhunter said...

What else could it become? If it's been rejected as a nursery it's not going to get approval for a bar, nightclub, strip joint, church etc etc. I think resi use is the most likely.

Danja said...

A nursery, on appeal.

The church is unlikely, but the nightlife uses would be hard to resist given the established use. Not that there is much appetite for that.

Maybe they will try for a block of flats next.

Tyrwhitt Michael said...

Something like an care home might be the next option. The hall at the back could be a communal longe dining room with bed rooms elsewhere.

Less comings and goings (bar the odd hearse) and less noise, 24 hours use though.

The problem with going back to a residential use is that it greatly reduces the value of the property and in the current climate probably won't stack up ecomomically.

Not unless the owners reduce their expectations cash wise.

If the nursey owners want they can have a nusery at the end of Tyrwhitt Road in any of the derelict properties - I won't object.

Tyrwhitt Michael said...

"Nursery" that should read.

Headhunter said...

It would be complete and utter madness to approve a bar or club there, that would never get through on a quiet residential street. Anyway we established that despite previous use, the property is "sui generis", so a switch to bar or club would not be automatic.

If it's not residential, then OAP home would be preferable to a nursery as far as I'm concerned. I don't hate kids or anything, but large flocks of them make a lot of noise and OAPs don't need dropping off and picking up every morning and afternoon.

Residential use on a residential road seems the most logical. Demolishing an extension out the back hardly seems a huge stumbling block, The Martins Yard development calls for demolition of several buildings before construction can begin. As for the current market, there are still planning applications for resi developments going through as we can see again from the Martins Yard application.

Anonymous said...

The Portland Casino anyone?

SJW said...

Surely quality childcare would have been an excellent use for the building. If everyone is worried about the prices of there house then it should have been encouraged. We need more childcare in Brockley not less that way nice,young, upstanding working parents will move to the area and you will all have the 'East Dulwhich on the cheep' you all dream of on this blog.

Anonymous said...

Alternative uses no planning persmission required...

D2 Assembly and leisure - Cinemas, music and concert halls, bingo and dance halls (but not night clubs), swimming baths, skating rinks, gymnasiums or sports arenas (except for motor sports, or where firearms are used).

Sui Generis - Theatres, houses in multiple paying occupation, hostels providing no significant element of care, scrap yards. Petrol filling stations and shops selling and/or displaying motor vehicles. Retail warehouse clubs, nightclubs, launderettes, taxi businesses, amusement centres. Casinos.

Some private care homes locally have been selling as they are valuable because of there Class. A potential purchaser could change its use without having to obtain planning permission.

If it did become residential isn't a developer going to use the existing dance hall (that can hold 120 people) as justification for a large extension to the property?

Headhunter said...

I doubt a noisy nursery on the doorstep would have exactly helped house prices. Anyway if I wanted East Dulwich I would have moved there...

Everyone goes on about how we desperately need nurseries in Brockley, yet at 1 point in the proceedings, Zoom admitted that they expected the potential nursery to run at 80% capacity at most! If there's so much demand, surely parents would be queuing to break the door down to get their kiddies in? Obviously not...

Brockley Nick said...

No headhunter, that is not a logical inference.

Let's say hypothetically that there is a shortage of 50 places in an area. That means 50 people desparate for places.

If someone comes along and builds a centre of 75 places on the basis that the property can house that number of places and they want to anticipate future demand, then a nursery could meet all that existing demand and still run at only 66% capacity.

It doesn't follow, therefore, that the demand for 50 places didn't exist in the first place.

Tamsin said...

A nursery cash flow never assumes full capacity because you will always have parents who leave without notice, the massive upheavals twice a year with the school intake and the need to stagger the settling in process of new children if it is to be done properly.
But there are vacancies in the area - admittedly for older children. There are alternatives - childminders. And the government is finally in the process of exending parental leave to a more civilised allowance.

Headhunter said...

Sui Generis - "Other uses are considered Sui Generis; that is, they are uses on their own unrelated to other uses. A change of use from say a field to a caravan park would require planning permission, so too a domestic garage to a business workshop, or house to an hotel etc."

See here. So something which is "sui generis" will always need a planning application to change use.

Anonymous said...

yeah headhunter, make your inferences logical in the future.

Reg said...

The building is not sui generis, they just wanted to brand it as that to get it into the necessary use class. It's 'two' buildings, a 'house', and a link-attached hall.
The problem was that the vendors got greedy. Instead of reducing the price and going for residential they opted to advertise commercially.
That initially netted a high offer from Zoom.
They should now re-price, with the demolition of the hall, or part of it, taken into account; plus the condition of the building, which isn't really theirs anyway.
I was more interested in mention of 42 Beadnell Road. A 24-place nursery, it was turned down by delegated powers.
Strangely, the chair of Committee C, John Paschoud, stated that he 'used' to live near it. In fact he still owns it and its exactly three doors along! So who's the NIMBY!

Anonymous said...

Maybe the campaigning will start all over again,If lewisham council try to turn it into Hostel for recovering Alcoholics and Drug Addicts

max said...

That's when you take a group photo for the press with plenty of prams and small children;-)

Anonymous said...

Your right max,But If it was a nursery there would always be children and prams outside, lol

Anonymous said...

HH your not one of these people who says its alright,As long as its not on my door step ?

Headhunter said...

Exactly anon, I'm a NIMBY. To be honest with you, if this was planned for another street, I may not even have heard about it, so in that sense you are correct. But whether or not I would have objected with similar vehemence to similar plans on another road, I still think that setting up relatively large commercial establishments on quiet residential roads, be it mine or someone else's, is not good.

Anonymous said...

Another depressing victory for the forces of reaction.

willow said...

This is a wonderful opportunity to site the nursery where it will be most welcome and well used on Tyrwhitt Road.
The councillors a wise decision.

Anonymous said...

No the NIMBY Army will be waiting there too no doubt, with their fatuous reasoning and smug air of self satisfaction.

Tyrwhitt Michael said...

I have already stated I wouldn't object especially if it moved into one or more of the derelict properties at the north end of the road.

Nursery operators however might not like the competition from the Nursery in the medical centre down the road and the existing one at No40ish.

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