Ladywell conservation area to be created

Green Ladywell reports that following consultation with local residents, the area of Ladywell bordering Hilly Fields will become a conservtion area, effectively extending the boundary of the the Brockley conservation area, which it will neighbour.

The roads involved are Algiers Road, Gillian Street and sections of Embleton Road, Ermine Road, Algernon Road, Ladywell Road and Vicar's Hill. The majority of houses on these streets were built by Lewisham local developer Samuel J. Jerrard through the 1880s and 1890s.

63 comments:

Hugh said...

'affected'

Brockley Nick said...

Yes Hugh, you are ;)

Anonymous said...

There goes my Sky subscription...

Anonymous said...

Everything Brockley does Ladywell does


but better.

Baffled said...

Someone has a chip on their shoulder, they need to get out more (perhaps out of south London)

Nearly in the Conservation Area said...

Marvellous news. I am very chuffed about this. Don't suppose it means that everyone with uPVC windows has to change them back, though, does it?!
On that note, isn't the stretch of Tressillian that goes down towards St Margaret's road in the Conservation Area? If it is, how come so many of the houses there have plastic windows, some of them quite recently installed?

Hugh said...

I went for a walk around Ladywell recently. You'd have to say it's a very poor relation to the Brockley conservation area.

Nearly in the Conservation Area said...

Hugh, YOU might have to say that but I would have to disagree. CA status will (hopefully) put a stop to some of the less attractive changes people have made to their houses but the houses themselves on the roads mentioned are lovely grand houses in many cases. And as I implied on my previous post, there are bits of the brockley CA that are, for want of a better word, mingin', despite the protection they supposedly enjoy. Cf the previously mentioned stretch of Tressillian, or much of tyrwhitt, for example. The little 'high street' in ladywell, the like of which brockley does not have, is already showing promise and its new status will only galvanise it further. I think ladywell is the one to watch (and no, actually I don't live in ladywell).

Anonymous said...

The Conservation Area dont seem to be as strong as it once was,they complained about sat dishes for a while but now there are 100s of them about,probably be the same with the windows.

Hugh said...

I agree that CA status guarantees little. White plastic window frames and chav dishes are legion. At least we have the comfort of knowing we're paying for them.

Tressilliana said...

Lewisham doesn't seem to enforce the conservation area rules re plastic windows, not on Tressillian Road, anyway. I don't recall any being installed in the last few years but there were lots put in in the 90s when the road was definitely in the conservation area.

Headhunter said...

Exactly. CA status means litle in Lewisham Borough. The council never enforces any of the rules, regarding them more as "guidelines", it seems. A woman I worked with who lived in Notting Hill had UPVC DG put into her flat and was very quickly told by whatever local authority operates over there that she had to replace them or isk court action.

One of my neighbours on Manor Ave who has since moved out, spent a lot of time and effort campaigning for the council to get all the satellite dishes removed from Manor Ave (he counted about 50), but was consistentlt fobbed off, the council basically saying there was nothing they could do.

Conservation area status in Lewisham means nothing and is essentially pointless. Lewisham BC regards conservation as an irritant, look at the whole Gordonbrock School debacle, they would prefer Broc Soc and its supporters to quietly disappear so that they can get on with their demolition.

Anonymous said...

I guess it's a question of the council trying to get the community to get together and help regenerate their local area.

By the way that means sympathetic restorations and renovations. Not snobbish persecution of anyone with a tiny satellite dish on the front of their house.

Lou Baker said...

Let's hope this decision doesn't spawn the type of conservation nitwits that others in the area have.

Householders should be allowed to have a satellite dish if they want one.

Upvc windows are substantially better than sash windows at keeping heat in and draughts and noise out.

We live in the Telegraph Hill conservation area which the local Victoriana police rule with a traditionally designed iron rod.

Having had our sashes refurbished several times - at great expense- I want a better alternative that'll last. But I can't.
It really is a dumb rule which says wheelie bins, TV aerials and cars all add to the Victorian feel
of the place while satellite dishes and new windows don't.

Good luck Ladywellers. I feel for you.

Headhunter said...

I understand that some people may feel the need for satellite TV, however it is possible to locate these at the chimney line, just like TV aeriels, rather than bolted in all their nasty, plastic ugliness to the front of Victorian buildings. And many houses on Manor Ave have 4 or 5 on a single building, one for each flat!

As for UPVC vs wood framed DG, it is absolute rubbish to claim that UPVC offers better insulation. Yes, it offers better insulation than original single pane windows, but certainly no better than wood framed DG, which is allowed.

Anyway, we've been over this before. My point is that the no satellite dishes, no UPVC frames rules are meant to be enforced and they are not. My question is simply, what is the point of creating yet another meaningless conservation area when Lewisham BC cannot be bothered to enforce the rules in the existing CAs? May as well not bother with whatever lengthy consultation period was embarked on and save the money that was spent on civil servants shuffling paper around to create this new CA.

Headhunter said...

....And Lou, there's no need to "feel" for Ladywellers, I assume they voted for this CA to be implemented a that it wasn't forced on them dictatorship style...

Anonymous said...

The trouble is hard wood DG is probably twice the price of uPVC, so why pay more when you can get away with It,and if the Council want to enforce it maybe they should stump up some of the cost.

Anonymous said...

They're at least twice the price to install, never mind the upkeep. And to put wooden sashes back where aluminium or upvc have previously been can be cripplingly expensive of the box sashes have been removed. I don't live in the CA and a previous owner had put in aluminium windows. I hate upvc but in the end, there was no way we could justify the expense of putting sashes back in. It's not our 'forever' house, most other people in the road have upvc and it's practical and low maintenance. However, if you want the cache and inflated house prices that go with living in the CA I think the rules should be enforced and house owners should feel a responsibility to protect the CA status - and accept the financial commitment it entails.

Anonymous said...

There's probably a lot of people who dont even realise there living in a Conservation area.

Tamsin said...

It is tough on those who have conservation area status wished on them when they don't want it - future purchasers will know what they are buying into.

From the Telegraph Hill experience LBL are certainly not as responsive as they might be with enforcement which does make the whole thing a bit meaningless at times.

Anonymous said...

Why grant Conservation Area status when they dont Enforce the rules.

Anonymous said...

Has anybody noticed the new loft extensions with windows onto the street in the CA?I also thought this was against CA guidelines.How can people get away with it?

Lou Baker said...

People can 'get away' with converting their loft because, thank God, we don't yet live in a Nazi state,

What really gets my goat about the consevationists is that they continually get their priorites wrong. A sympathetically done loft conversion can help update a house to make it more suitable for modern living.

Upgrades like this incur the wrath of the conservation police when the real issue is people failing to properly maintain their properties. Peeling paintwork, crumbling walls, overgrown gardens, rubbish dumped out the front ... these are the real problems and the real reasons our conservation areas are not a patch on those in some other parts of London.

Brockley Nick said...

Have to say i totally agree with Lou on this occasion, minus the obligatory Nazi reference.

Monkeyboy said...

Yeah, my grandad stormed the beaches and took one in the arse so I could stone clad my house without fear of a knock on the door from those jack booted inspectors. That and oompah music.

Anonymous said...

I don't agree with Lou - you know what it is when you buy here.

Big Baytree said...

I think it's a fabulous idea. It will mean Ladywellers can't pretend they're downtrodden or looked down on by the terrible conservation people in `Brockley', or make out there's some kind of class war thing going on. Plus they'll have to think twice before replacing their windows mwah, haha!

Tamsin said...

In a conservation area you can do what you like to your loft provided what you do is not visible from any street or public space, i.e. don't mess with the roofline and tiles - the regular pattern of which is a major contributor to a Victorian/Edwardian Conservation Area.

And would Lou really prefer the "Conservation Police" to be able to say - you won't spend your money on a family holiday when the house needs repainting?

Brockley Nick said...

@Tamsin - skylights are pretty discreet and sympathetic additions to historic houses - much more so than TV aerials, for example.

Lou's point is that there is too much focus on things like this, which make a minimal difference to the look and feel of an area and not enough to people leaving their bins in the street, kitchen sinks in their front gardens and generally letting their immediate surroundings go to hell.

I agree with that. It's a lot easier to stop somebody who's gone to the trouble of appointing an architect and a builder and made a planning application than it is to encourage people who don't give a toss about proper procedure.

Thus, we punish the conscientious and ignore the anti-social.

Headhunter said...

Exactly Tamsin, just as it's possible to install wood framed DG windows (admittedly at higher cost than UPVC but if you buy in a CA, that's your look out, no one is forcing anyone to buy in the CA), it's also possible to have satellite dishes at the chimney line rather than bolted incongruously to the front of the building. It's also possible to install loft windows on the rear slope of a building rather than the front.

Yet again Lewisham BC doesn't bother to enforce this. I noticed one of the houses along the road by the park has had plastic framed roof windows installed in the front slope without planning permission.

Anon 28 March 2010 13:14 - it is not possible to buy in the CA without knowing it. Even if the local estate agent selling the property doesn't mention it about 100 times to you (as a selling point), it's all in the documentation sent onto you by the solicitor you use when you buy. If you don't read the info then that's your look out.

Brockley Nick said...

Point of info HH, acting on the advice of people on this site, who said it was a doddle to get a dish on the chimney, I investigated getting Sky, because I own an HD tv and have never watched anything HD on it (I know, serves me right).

After several visits, Sky said it wasn't possible to put one on the chimney and my only choice was the side of the house. So that was the end of that.

Headhunter said...

Wheelie bins and mattresses on the street are all temporary whereas nasty great satellite dishes and even more so, windows in front slopes of roofs are much more permanent.

The point is though if Lewisham BC is going announce new conservation areas then it needs to enforce them, if it doesn't want to do that, then it shouldn't create even more. Willy nilly scattering conservation area status across the borough with no follow up just makes Lewisham BC look a walk over and completely disorganised. Just leaves me wondering, well if they can't enforce a CA after the hoo ha involved in setting it up, what else are they neglecting?

Lou Baker said...

@tamsin

No, I'd prefer the conservation police to be constructive and not disruptive.

Friends of mine went through a ridicuolous number of hoops to be able to renovate their house - entire because of the Telegraph Hill Society.

Work done, their house is fabulous. It's been knocked about a bit inside but it's had decades added to its life as a
wonderful family home. That happened despite theTelegraph Hill Society and not because
of it.

This stuff isn't hard. Rather than saying no satellite dishes on the front of a house, push for more appropriately placed ones - and recommend local installers who'll
do it properly. (Sky themselves won't stick it high enough due to silly health and safety rules). In properties which have been split in to flats, encourage the landlord to stick one dish in an out of the way spot so all the flats can be fed from a single source.

Rather than saying no Upvc find and actively recommend local companies who'll double glaze sashes - and do a good job everytime.

And accept that things change. If they didn't none of our houses would have inside toilets and I suspect they nearly all do.

You are supposed to CONSERVE the feel of an area not PRESERVE every detail - which the THS often fails to understand.

@nick

You must be gutted to agree with me!

Brockley Nick said...

@Lou - BC is a big tent.

Conservation v Preservation is exactly right.

Mind you, our tent isn't big enough for uPVC windows - the devil's work and by installnig them you knock a few grand off the resale value of your house.

Bea said...

I’ve mentioned it before (a couple of years back now admitedly) but the Council does enforce the Conservation Area guidelines if you give them a call and ask them to investigate. In the last five years I am aware of the Council forcing:

- a large house on Breakspears Road to replace all its newly installed uPVC windows back to wood sash ones

- a front garden to remove all its newly laid paving stones (making it look like a parking lot) and turn it into turf instead

- a house to remove all the black plastic rubbish bags from it front garden

- a seperate house to remove the sofa rotting away in the front garden

If you have a concern call this number 020 8314 7400 and mention that Brockley Conservation area is subject to Article 4.

If you do this as soon as you spot something wrong then it's easier for the Council to enforce.

Headhunter said...

Nick - I haven't got Sky, but Tressillian James posted on another conservation area thread here that he had phoned Sky and been told exactly the opposite, that it IS possible to put the dish at the chimney line and at no extra cost.

In fact many people already have satellite dishes at the chimney line so it's obviously possible. I think you must have been speaking to the work experience lad.

Brockley Nick said...

Thanks Bea, I might turn that point in to a separate thread.

Anonymous said...

my experience of living formerly in the brockley conservation area and currently in a lewisham one is that the council has no intention of enforcing the majority of the rules that go with such a status.
my street is a small cul-de-sac, all of uniform victorian town houses. up until last summer, no satellite dishes to be seen. then some renters moved in to one of the houses, had an ugly sky dish installed smack bang by their front door (the spot requiring the minimum amount of effort or thought by the installer). i've complained about this three times to the council, each complaint has been ignored. it's one thing for it to be hesitant to control the dishes once the genie is out of the bottle (ie in a large area like the brockley CA), but our conservation area consists of one cul de sac of 20 houses. they could have nipped it in the bud straight away, but could not be bothered.

and by the way, your typical sky installer will not be interested in installing on a chimney or anywhere else that might require some effort. much easier to just whack it on in the worst place possible.

Brockley Nick said...

@HH - yes. That is what they SAY. I am telling you from first-hand experience that it is certainly not always the case. I'd wager that it will not be the case for most of the houses in the conservation area, on account of their height.

The sophisticated installation technology they employ consists of a man and a ladder.

Headhunter said...

Bea - Apart from forcing the home owner on Breakspears to replace UPVC DG, none of the things mentioned are specific to the CA (I'm surprised that they did this on Breakspears, never heard of anyone else being told to replace UPVC).

I'm sure that if I lived outside the CA and complained about a neighbour's black rubbish sacks or rotting sofa, they would eventually do something about it. Same goes for concreting the front garden. You cannot do this anywhere in the borough without planning permission due to problems with run off water and flooding. Not CA specific.

As for Lou's suggestion that Broc Soc and Telegraph Hill Soc suggest tradesman who can install DG and put satellite dishes up, good idea, however Broc Soc is run by about 3 people nowadays, I doubt they have the time or manpower to get something like this together. If you have ideas like this, perhaps yuo should volunteer and offer to help?

Welcome to 2010 said...

Again, HH gets stuck in to a debate without knowing the facts and arguing with people who have actually tried it!

HH - you come across as a nice bloke, but sometimes you should just admit that other people know more about a subject than you and bow out gracefully. Something like..

"OK fair enough."

Try it.

Anonymous said...

@Nick - and most of the time that lader won't even come off the van. the installer would rather do it leaning out a window or at standing height from the ground.

Headhunter said...

Welcome to 2010 - I said that Tressilian James had posted that it IS possible to install sat dishes at the chimney line and I have SEEN sat dishes, even on my own street, at the chimney line. I am simply posting what I have heard and seen, I said right at the start that I don't have Sky. Try to read what I have written properly...

drakefell debaser said...

Progress has been made in terms of size but when I was a kid in Zimbabwe, anyone wishing to watch an alternative to our uncle bobs propaganda channel would need to install a dish like this:

http://ow.ly/1s1d1

Wealthy neighbourhoods started to look like NASA outposts and even with the larger garden sizes they were a tad incongrous. You also had to track the satalite in outer space before you could watch anything and keep adjusting where the dish was pointing. Hours of fun.

Tamsin said...

Any architect worth paying ought to know what is possible in a CA and what is not, so don't push the boundaries. And some people check first, which is helpful and makes for a much better atmosphere all round. Slightly chary these litigious days of having "recommended" contractors - but general advice is usually available and the Telegraph Hill Society has books that can be borrowed on care of and renovation of Victorian properties.

And velux skylights can go on the back roof-slopes with impunity.

Bea said...

HH - in fact the rubbish in the front garden is specific for the CA as anyone outside a CA area is entitled to leave what rubbish they like there (so long as it isn't an environmental hazard such as food). A front garden is private property so any amount of rotting sofas and mattresses are OK. However, if there is an Article 4 in place they have to be removed.

Welcome to 2010 said...

@HH - there you go again.

Nick said that it was not always easy to get a dish installed on the chimney.

You told him that he must have got the work experience boy. Implication: Nick was wrong and just needed to try harder.

Now he and others have explained to you why it's more difficult than you thought, you still haven't admitted that they might be right and now you're arguing with me too.

Headhunter said...

Bea - That surprises me. I would have thought that a council would have the right to get people to clear rubbish from front spurious health and safety issue or something. No matter anyway as most people dump mattresses and unwanted furniture actually in the street rather than their own front gardens.

Pete said...

We live on Algiers Road and we're quite happy about the conservation status.

It is a bit late though as quite a lot of houses on the street already have UPVC windows.

The cost of double glazed, wooden sash windows is enormous though - we had one large window at the back of the house replaced and it cost us £1500.

Bea said...

@HH - nope (its private property and the Council can't get at it without a warrant) so builders rubble, a skip to keep your firewood and drinks in or an old fridge freezer can all take up residence in the front of a property - and that's why it’s an advantage to live in a CA area!

Anonymous said...

Of course a Sat dish can be Installed on the chimney Its probably most Installation firms haven't go the equipment to do it.
There's too many on the sides of houses to change or make any difference now anyway.

Brockley Nick said...

Yes, it surely is technically possible to attach something to a chimney. But in some / many cases Sky won't, which was the subject being debated.

Danja said...

By repute Sky are not flexible about working at height (even their 'high' team). Private installers a better bet (but at a higher price).

Danja said...

builders rubble, a skip to keep your firewood and drinks in or an old fridge freezer can all take up residence in the front of a property

The Article 4 direction removes some of the otherwise 'permitted development rights'. I don't think any of those examples count as development in the first place. HH is more likely to be right about the sort of levers used, if the Council have intervened on such things.

Tressillian James said...

I did say that Sky would install on the roof - and they did tell my neighbours and me that they would come along with their high rise team and do so. Unfortunatley the PFI told the neighbours that it doesn't matter and have it put on the front. So they did. I have seen the letter the PFI sent the neighbour to tell her not to worry about it being a conservation area. The PFI who are in charge of all the council's freeholds in the CA.

I'm not sure about Jesus, but when a neighbour tries to do the right thing but is told not to worry about it by the council's agents; and the results are a dish on the front of the house...I wept tears..

Anonymous said...

Theres another CA rule scrubbed from the rule book then.

Bea said...

Danja - you're the lawyer not me - but Article 4 is what the Council used to get the rubbish removed from the front of my neighbour's property (located in the CA). The enforcement planning officer made a visit and told them to get rid of it asap. It had been there for a month and was about 50 black bin bags (at this stage covered in snow) full of old clothes and builders rubble.

I was told by the environment office (those that collect our rubbish) that as it was building rubble / clothes there was nothing they could do since it didn't attract rats (nor was it any other kind of health hazard) and was private property. They also made a visit to check out the front garden! When I told them I was in a Conservation Area they were the ones who mentioned Article 4 and suggested I contact the enforcement officer.

It was also used when I complained about a new developer (converting a house into rental flats) who had covered the front garden in paving slabs.

Article 4 can be used not just for the property itself but the front garden and the garden wall.

Mind you Councils don’t always win - see this for a horror story!


http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1254430/What-load-rubbish-Neighbours-disgust-hoarder-wins-right-garden-junk.

Headhuin said...

TJ - that just about sums up the council's attitude to conservation areas.... Yet they are creating more. How utterly pointless...

Headhunter said...

That last comment was me. Did you raise that withe anyone at the council or send a copy of the letter across?

TJ said...

I complained directly to the PFI who said it was an oversight but nothing they could do now. As I get on with my neighbour i don't want to push it - but it is annoying that it is properties where the council are the freeholders that are flouting the rules. Makes me wonder if the council could be prosecuted...by the council.

Headhunter said...

When the PFI people did up the council owned properties along Manor Avenue, they took the sat dishes off and helpfully bolted them to the scaffolding! However when the scaff came down, they didn't put them back on the fronts of the buildings and for a brief moment, Manor Ave was nearly free of dishes, however slowly since then, they have all come back and now some houses have 4 or 5 bolted to them in clusters...

footpaths for pedestrians said...

Any one know the number to ring to get the footpaths clear of wheelie bins?

I tried once, but they just wanted me to name the houses and go to enforcement. Not wanting to seem like a Nazi, I declined.

dougie said...

Hi guys I live in a converted flat of a victorian house in ermine rd se13 7jj. I rebuilt a retaining wall for my drive thats only 2.5 feet high and 10 feet long. The planning department are saying that as its now a conservation area i must apply for planning permission for it despite it being built before the conservation act. it was built in december 2009. Can someone tell me why?I am told i have to pay £150 for the appication as its a flat not a single occupancy home so confusing this

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