Healthy Streets – Hounslow and Brentford: OSG Ward Councillors’ Response to TfL

This is what we sent to Mr Fraser Macdonald, Local Communities and Partnerships Team, Transport for London on 16 February 2022 as a response to the first Healthy Streets consultation for between Kew Bridge and Hounslow Town.  Osterley and Spring Grove Ward Councilors focussed on the London Road (A315) in our Ward.

Dear Mr Macdonald

Healthy Streets – Hounslow and Brentford

Cycleway 9 – Hounslow to Brentford whole route

Thank you for the opportunity to respond to Transport for London’s proposals for cycling and walking in the part of the borough that includes Osterley and Spring Grove Ward.  London Road in the Ward runs from Isleworth Station to Thornbury Road at the Milford Arms and, unless indicated, our comments will focus on that length of the A315.

Subject to final proposals, following this and the next consultation, we do not have any whole scheme objections; considered change to infrastructure, however, is important.  Whilst supporting improvements for safe cycling, our observations focus on pedestrian safety and access, reducing bus travel delays, car access to shops, active consideration of green infrastructure.

Thus far, there is no discernible Equality Impact Assessment within this initial consultation but a thorough report of such analyses would be expected at the next stage.

Pedestrian safety

Unprotected pedestrian crossing: Sainsbury’s Junction at London and St Johns Roads

A long-held concern for many residents using the shops and other services on London Road is that there is a need for a full pedestrian phase crossing at the St Johns Road junction (Map 8).  Widening of the junction would not be sufficient to compensate for westbound, left turn, blind spots but, if addressed, would negate the requirement for a dog leg pelican crossing by 489 and 466 London Road.

Cycleway 9 Isleworth Station and St Johns Road

The sheer numbers of unregimented school students, (Isleworth and Syon, Gumley, Green Girls, Green Boys) at home time, using this location, particularly westbound, needs to be carefully examined.  Isleworth Post Office users attempting to meet last collections adds to the melee.  London Road bus boarders from College Road/Isleworth Station and St Johns Road should be re-examined with a view to offering either an alternative design or a route around the shops.

Hounslow Council is about to implement its long-proposed cycle route from London Road, through Isleworth Station Car Park to St Johns Road and this would act as a safe substitute to what is proposed between 459 and 489 London Road.  The proposal to relocate the current Isleworth Station bus stop to outside Isleworth Post Office at 477 London Road would, therefore, not be necessary.

Bus routes efficiency

Removal of bus lanes from London Road would limit the ability of buses on the five routes, through Isleworth to Brentford and Hounslow, to catch up from delays caused elsewhere.  The taking out of these important priority devices would affect people in low paid jobs who rely on buses for long commutes, bus borne residents, those naturally less able to cycle or walk the distances between centres.  The next consultation should quantify journey time impacts of removal of bus lanes as well as justify any lack of alternative approach to their retention.

Trees

It is not clear as to how many mature London Plane trees from the whole of the area in focus would be proposed to be removed along the route and these should be astutely detailed at the next consultation, preferably explained to neighbours even earlier.  Removals should be avoided with infrastructure and cycle lanes safely built around specimens wherever possible.  Replacement trees should be the largest size available for planting in order to achieve maximum impact from the get go.

Shopper parking

An effort to recognise vehicle usage to access businesses on and off London Road, including the last remaining bank between Hounslow and Chiswick at number 468 is appreciated and, subject to local consultation, we would suggest that alternative shopper parking bays be installed on College Road, Avenue Road and Thornbury Road to compensate for those which may be removed locally, elsewhere on the A315.

There is an older demographic in Osterley and Spring Grove Ward who do and would walk to patronise services in the neighbourhoods around the London Road.  However, a number of our residents also have carer responsibilities and also chauffer less ambulant friends, neighbours and family members to appointments and local shops; we would want them to retain this liberty with sufficient car borne access and facilities.

Residents and businesses, locally would wish to be listened to and very much considered when designing this next phase of Cycleway 9.  As Ward Councillors, we would be happy to support as well as facilitate wider discussion and also meet Transport for London and local traffic professionals to walk the London Road in Isleworth.

Yours sincerely

Tony Louki, Unsa Chaudri, Richard Eason

Labour Party Councillors for Osterley and Spring Grove Ward

Copied to:  Mr Jefferson Nwokeoma, Assistant Director of Traffic, Transport and Parking, London Borough of Hounslow

Added by TL  1.3.2022

 

Comments Off on Healthy Streets – Hounslow and Brentford: OSG Ward Councillors’ Response to TfL

Filed under Hounslow Highways, London Road, Neighbourhoods, Public transport, Roads, Spring Grove, TfL, Thornbury Park, Traffic

Rothbury Gardens: Retrospective planning application

Back in the mid 1990s, when people were less enthusiastic about growing their own, the then Acton Housing Association, predecessor of monolith A2Dominion, were permitted to build eight proper family houses on the western part of the privately owned but Hounslow Leisure Services run allotments at Rothbury Gardens.

Former Syon Lane Allotments sign at Rothbury Gardens

The eastern part of the allotments, behind the garages block by Platform 1 of Syon Lane Station, said to be covering buried utilities mains, were to be left alone.  It was later occupied by the Eco Villagers, displaced from the former Plough public house, Kew Bridge Road by those Berkeleys.

The Villagers, on an annual licence, set about resurrecting, in their own way, a place to grow organically, welcomed residents to tend to mini plots and offered schools projects.  This ended around 2015 when the land was sold, locked up and left to its own natural devices.  Apart from the odd rough sleeper, residents raised very few complaints.

Tree felling contractor resticting access to Syon Lane Station and unauthorised use of resident parking spaces.

On 27 January 2020, quite abruptly and without notice to neighbours or anyone else, a local tree felling outfit arrived.  Blocking the approach to the Station with unauthorised placing of their trucks and began to rip out trees and scrape other vegetation.  What happened to the foxes, no one knows.

Felled trees (allowed as no tree preservation orders nor in a conservation area) January 2020.

Accompanied by a resident, visiting Rothbury Gardens to find out more, we were lied to, as was anyone who asked, that the works were taking place as instructed by “the council” and the disturbance continued.  The tree decimation was cleared as was some but not all of the effects of the eco village.

Rothbury Gardens hoardings erected without planning permission,post clearance in February 2020

Site hoardings were erected, without planning permission but this was later rectified and consent given in September 2020.

On 24 November 2021, some residents again contacted me, very concerned about new extensive works carried out by stealth, without any notice to neighbours or Hounslow Council.

Aggregate lorry on Rothbury Gardens without traffic management and Marlborough Scool students navigating an unsafe route to school.

After the first lorry turned up on 10 December to start laying aggregate, allegedly “to suppress any weed growth”, the council’s planning officers were alerted and a planning enforcement site inspection followed on 13 December 2021.  I was advised that this activity was permitted but then, on 21 December, a neighbour spoke of further disregard for pedestrian and highway safety, shipping containers began to be placed.

Grab lorry inhibiting pedestrians at Syon Lane Station

At one point Police were called and attended when a grab lorry was dumping aggregate over telephone lines at the eastern end of the site whilst at the same time blocking pedestrian access to Syon Lane Station.

Raising this with the Head of Planning Enforcement the land owner’s agents were written to asking for a proper planning application be submitted to the council by 1 February 2021 to allow for a formal assessment whether the containers may be retained on site.

Containers located at former allotment site on Rothbury Gardens late January 2022

Bank holidays excepted, between before Christmas and until 25 January 2022, despite numerous relaying of residents’ almost daily reports and photographic evidence of, often unsafe, activity there, works continued without any commmunication with neighbours, construction management and vehicle access  plan, plus other safeguards ahead of this now retrospective submission.

Unfortunately, this appeared to be an example of interests playing an austerity affected and under resourced neighbourhoods planning system, often and increasingly stacked against communities and less likely to be operating at full capacity over the holiday season.

However.

A planning application has now been submitted, along with accompanying documents.

It is described as a, “Retrospective application for the temporary change of use of the land to open storage and associated works for 3 years.”

The application can be found online via the Hounslow Council Planning pages, and accessed using either System Reference P/2022/0388 or Planning Reference 00965/B/P13, Land at Rothbury Gardens, Isleworth, TW7 5JG.

Documents submitted can also be found, below:

 The applicant’s Planning Statement

Planning application form

Site plan.

 I have asked the Area Planning Manager to ensure that all households in Rothbury Gardens, Hexham Gardens and others nearby in Warkworth Gardens are sent letters offering the opportunity to comment.

After reading the submitted planning documents, anyone wishing to make individual representations on this application please send these quoting System Reference P/2022/0388  to planning.objections@hounslow.gov.uk

TL  10.2.2022

Comments Off on Rothbury Gardens: Retrospective planning application

Filed under Neighbourhoods, Northumberland Estate, Osterley, Planning

Syon Lane developments proposals to be heard at a Public Inquiry

Nicholas Grimshaw’s 1987 Homebase Building, Syon Lane, Isleworth

 

The Right Hon Michael Gove MP has, today, responded to the letter Osterley and Spring Grove Ward Councillors sent him on 26 September 2021 regarding the proposed Syon Lane developments on the Homebase and Tesco sites.

The Secretary of State has written advising that he has decided to call in both applications.  This means, that under the 1990 Planning Act powers, they shall be referred to him for decision instead of being dealt with locally.

The Secretary of State has ordered a local inquiry with arrangements for holding it to be made by the Planning Inspectorate in Bristol.  He particularly wishes to be informed about,

  • the extent to which the proposed developments are is consistent with Government policies for conserving and enhancing the area’s historic environment
  • consistency with the local plan for the area
  • any other matters the Inspector considers relevant.

Where permitted, Ward Councillors will contribute to the Inquiry and continue to support residents on these matters, consistent with our approach since early 2019.

For further reading:

Letter from Minister of State for Housing to Councillor Louki, 24 November 2021

Letter on behalf of the Secretary of State to Hounslow Council, 24 November 2021

TL 24.11.2021

Comments Off on Syon Lane developments proposals to be heard at a Public Inquiry

Filed under Brentford, Great West Road, Middlesex, Neighbourhoods, Northumberland Estate, Osterley, Planning

Osterley Park Hotel – Licence Variation Application

Osterley Park Hotel, 764 Great West Road

 

Numerous neighbour representations regarding impacts of post lockdown goings on at the Osterley Park Hotel and its Terminal Six bar (bad parking, fireworks, noisy departures) placed this venue back on the council and police radar.

Osterley Park Hotel: 5 squad cars and ambulance at Wood Lane. Photo by KA via NextDoor

Despite approaches led by Osterley and Spring Grove Ward Councillor Unsa Chaudri, proper action, prompting this variation application, only really ramped up after Police were called following alleged serious wounding of two victims (with one potentially life changing injury) related to an event at the hotel Terminal 6 Bar, early morning on Sunday 3 October 2021.

Neighbours of the site have received invitations to a meeting to learn more about this application, how to make representations and to raise other matters.  The meeting will take place at 7.30 pm on Tuesday 16 November 2021 at Nishkam School, 152 Syon Lane, Isleworth, TW7 5PN to be chaired by Councillor Unsa Chaudri.  Residents would be welcome.

For information and use for making representations, the following can be found by clicking,

The deadline for representations to the Licensing Team is Friday 3 December 2021.

An item on an earlier licensing application from this website, published on 7 January 2018, can be accessed here.

Osterley Park Hotel: Unauthorised concreted over garden, August 2021

Other, as some have remarked, jungli activities, (unauthorised car washing, concreting green space for car sales, forming a vehicle access to Syon Park Gardens, waste container storage) continue to be raised by residents and, on whose behalf, councillors have passed to the council’s Planning Enforcement Team for processing and resolution.

Osterley Park Hotel: Badly managed waste storage

The London Borough of Hounslow Environmental Enforcement Team has issued the hotel operator a Community Protection Notice prohibiting the letting off of fireworks.  A Fixed Penalty Notice of £120 for not controlling its waste storage was given on 11.11.2021 and a warning that next time there would be a fine of £400 plus further prosecution under section 47 of the Environmental Protection Act 1990.

 

TL  13.11.2021

Comments Off on Osterley Park Hotel – Licence Variation Application

Filed under Council Business, Events, Licensing, Neighbourhoods, Osterley, Planning, RAs, TfL, Traffic

Hounslow Highways Deep Cleanse schedule

Temporary No Parking notices being posted across Osterley and Spring Grove Ward of late

Following weeks of numerous enquiries as to when the streets of Osterley and Spring Grove Ward would be liberated from weeds, Hounslow Highways sent me this list.

On checking the schedule, it was noted that a fair amount of roads and footpaths in the borough’s largest Ward were omitted so I shared this sheet with the missing third of locations and still await an update, hoping for the best.

About to take the Loukimousine to the football yesterday, I spotted a parking ticket under one of the wipers placed on the day the first side of the road got swept.

Yes, it has been paid; no councillor privilege expected nor sought.  Rinsed as well as cleansed.

Would that the council’s parking contractor was as enthusiastic in enforcing the CPZs off the London Road School Streets Scheme during term time mornings and afternoons.

For deep cleansing information in Wards elsewhere in the borough, visit the Hounslow Highways website.

TL  31.10.2021

 

Comments Off on Hounslow Highways Deep Cleanse schedule

Filed under Neighbourhoods, Parking, Roads, Traffic