BrocSoc calls community meeting to discuss Ashby Mews developments

Brockley Society Public Meeting - Ashby Mews – Gates and Resurfacing
Thursday 19 July 7.30pm
Myatt Garden School, Rokeby Road, SE4 1DF

Feelings have been running high about developments in Ashby Mews. BrocSoc has called a public meeting to discuss the issue. They say:

Locked gates recently installed at the Ashby Road end of Ashby Mews, SE4, followed by
resurfacing a stretch of the mews in tarmac have caused a significant number of residents
to contact Brockley Society to complain. We are holding a meeting to gauge local opinion,
explain the legal and planning ramifications and consider the next steps.

Everyone is welcome, whether you oppose or support the changes, simply walk through
the mews, or are just interested in the Brockley Conservation Area. Those responsible for
the gates and tarmac and those whose properties are affected are also welcome.

Brockley Society’s position is as follows:

1. Resurfacing the Mews in tarmac

Brockley’s mews are an integral part of the character of the Conservation Area. We view
black tarmac as inappropriate and believe it damages the character of the mews and may
also cause flooding or water seepage as no drainage is provided. Lewisham Planning
department is currently looking at enforcement. Planning and ownership in the mews is
very complex but we believe several solutions are worth exploring, including for this
section to remain resurfaced with a more sympathetic and sustainable topping material.

2. The Gates

The gates are inappropriate for the location: they are far too tall for gates on a public road
and contravene other guidelines in the Brockley Conservation Area. We believe they
should be reduced in height or removed entirely and replaced by a better “gallows” gate,
like those which exist in all Brockley’s other mews. The one currently in Ashby Mews,
behind the new gates, could have been modified.

3. The Right of Way

Ashby Mews is a private road. However, it is also a public right of way – and has been for
at least 120 years. This means the public have an established legal right to use the mews
as a footpath. Locked gates block the right of way. We believe that unimpeded pedestrian
and emergency vehicle access must be restored to the mews as soon as possible.

Brockley’s vibrant and open community has developed over many decades through the
work of Brockley Society, Brockley Open Studios, Brockley Cross Action Group and many
other community activities, campaigns and projects. Closing off a right of way and creating
a gated community is totally at odds with this.