Tag Archives: OWGRA

TW3.01 – Tales of the not unexpected

A couple of weeks ago when the Chair of Hounslow Council’s Labour Group released a statement on violence against residents in East Jerusalem, one correspondent on social media asked whether councillors didn’t have any local work to address.

A colleague, Councillor Salman Shaheen responded with a whole rake of items that he had been working on for his residents.  Salman’s retort prompted me to sincerely flatter the comrade from neighbouring Isleworth Ward.

I’m no David Frost, neither can I sing it like Millicent Martin let alone want to like Lance Percival, but here are some highlights from That Was The Week That Was from the currently longest serving councillor for Osterley and Spring Grove Ward.  Fresh out of the 55th Mayoralty, allow me to explain.

Sunday 16.5.2021

A more than an occasional issue at the wee Tesco on Spring Grove Road where delivery cages take up pavement space for often beyond the visit of the big trucks.  Particularly tiresome this time was the storing of these contraptions right up against one of the newly planted liquidambar styraciflua Worplesdon or Sweetgum trees.  This was reported to Hounslow Highways for enforcement via Fix My Street and am assured that this will not happen again … .

Illegally placed Tesco delivery cages endangering newly planted street trees

The Thornbury, London and Spring Grove Roads Triangle had been a badly regulated domestic and fly tipping hotspot for a long time before 2014.  Premises above shops were once accommodation for the family or staff running a business below but for many years the space has been sub divided and often short term tenanted.  This creates problems for household waste storage leading to outdoor mess.  The council’s recycling and waste team issue purple bags for waste from flats above shops and have placed a number of coffers at close proximity for their containment until twice weekly removal.  An improvement but mainly black bags still get dumped on pavements, added to by casual or opportunistic fly tippers; I always report this stuff to Hounslow Highways for removal via Fix My Street.  Occasional placement of cctv cameras does help identify perpetrators who are pursued and fined by the council.

One of many perps caught flytipping on Thornbury via Hounslow Council cctv and subsequently fined

Monday 17.5.2021

Visited Our Barn at Jubilee Lodge in Osterley Park to drop of some items commissioned for them to sell on behalf of the two charities (Our Barn and Hounslow Seniors Trust) chosen to profile and fundraise for when I was the 55th Mayor.  Their garden is looking lovely because members of the community have been busy maintaining it throughout and I got given rhubarb that day.

One of the many raised beds at Jubilee Lodge and source of my rhubarb gift

Following an earlier shout, was at Oaklands Avenue, within the Osterley Park Conservation Area.  Calling on neighbours either side who are concerned that improvement works next door had dragged for more than two years and not entirely as permitted.  The additional impacts of having an empty and unfinished house close by including rodent attraction, disconnected drainage and other fails in the property were getting them down.  A member of the council’s planning enforcement team is pursuing the owner to regularise and is already communicating with residents.

Messy and unfinished ‘improvement’ works at Oaklands Avenue

On Syon Lane with contractors, Hounslow Council and Hounslow Highways back in December 2020, I noted that a pedestrian crossing included as a traffic condition for the Bolder Academy planning permission was missing and suggesting that it was dropped.  No way Joseph! Happy that it was added in April for safe pedestrian access although it seems that the solar powered Belisha beacons require sunshine, reported but with the proviso that no trees are damaged in order to facilitate.

The nearly uninstalled zebra crossing on Syon Lane

Wednesday 19.5.2021

I was the guest speaker at the annual general meeting Osterley and Wyke Green Residents Association talking about my time as the rollover Mayor of the London Borough of Hounslow.  Tales of two years, some of the 340 events attended, 13 Borough Council meetings chaired, two Remembrance Sundays each at 10 war memorials, still making time to do casework and to try to represent my residents.  It was also a good reminder of the longevity of OWGRA with which I first developed a relationship during earlier planning events on the then United Biscuits site as well as working together on nonsense ambitions for other land in the Ward.

Thursday 20.5.2021

An alert of potential incursions in the Ward got me down to Wyke Green where I examined the integrity of the posts and padlocks surrounding the space, took pictures and reported to the council’s parks people and Ward Police team.  Osterley and Spring Grove Police Safer Neighbourhood Team were on duty, Saturday night, responding to my request to go look and discuss with the neighbour who raised it with me.

One of a few gaps potentially allowing vehicles on to Wyke Green

Friday 21.5.2021

A flurry of discourse on a social media site that will not be named resulted in a few visits and chats with residents the previous week with copious amounts of pictures taken, reports made to Hounslow Highways via Fix My Street and emails to the Director of Environmental Services.  The director, Mr Wayne Stephenson, already familiar with the issues rendezvoused for a whistle stop to locations from the Northumberland to Thornbury Road.

We met at Albury Avenue and on behalf of colleague Councillor Unsa Chaudri, who is currently engaged with residents on the state of pavements there.  The footways, a victim of pavement parking but moreso HGVs and skip lorries delivering on this narrow crescent these past 30+ years, will be focussed on as a result.

A drive in my motor via College Road to show Mr Stephenson the loss of integrity of half its 1992 vintage speed tables since a new road coating a couple of years ago; raised by a resident who scientifically measured and compared the differences.  On the ones affected by resurfacing, the current and previous speed limits were easily busted, the matter is, therefore, still live.

On to Borough Road where the previous week, more pictures of marked and unmarked road and pavement defects had been submitted after residents had been in touch.  I had visited in response to folk writing, some had been fixed but wanted to show the general state before a proper response from council officers managing the Hounslow Highways contract.

There are pictures of Borough Road surfaces but here’s an in situ and locally made gully grate there.

Quick visits over at Thornbury Avenue and The Grove to look at other surfaces reported and then to Weston Gardens, a cul de sac with a dozen properties and equal number of defects.  I had found with St Mary’s Crescent that the more a road’s potholes are reported and fixed, the further down the list a road goes for complete resurfacing; done now but it took five years since the first promise.  I introduced Wayne Stephenson to my resident contact there and agreed that while the space currently appears messy, Weston Gardens is very likely to get the full treatment soon, what little pavement and carriageway it actually has.

Messrs Atar and Stephenson at Weston Gardens, laughing at me

Our last stop was at Banksian Walk, part of the former carriageway to Spring Grove House, nicely planted with an avenue of yews but currently suffering ivy creep over neighbouring boundaries and the resident had been in touch.  Mr S agreed, more pictures taken and submitted with a service request to Hounslow Highways to manage the landscape plus one other to remove some graffiti on the wall there.

Ivy clad yew on Banksian Walk

Saturday 22.5.2021

Sidmouth Avenue and Crawford Close, near where Thornbury Park meets the railway and a neighbourhood that has sought council support for their projects and ambitions since 2014; residents, naturally, receive my assistance.  Excepting 2020, Saturday’s was the sixth annual neighbourhood tidy up and in seven years we’ve gone from a beyond brim skip to just 15 or so sacks of picked including from beyond these two roads, no longer any long term fly tips.

Skip being taken away from Crawford Close after the first community clear up back in 2014

On the way home via Kilberry Close to check, on Councillor Chaudri’s behalf, the occasionally abused estate based recycling facility there where the council’s Recycling and Enforcement Teams have been making efforts to “educate” and “encourage” residents and managing agents alike.  It’s Unsa’s case so I took pictures for her to share with the council teams.

This is a private site at Kilberry Close where LBH teams are encouraging owners to clear

Tuesday 25 May 2021

There.  Done for now.  Plenty more not to bore readers with but will be back with TW3.02 before too long.  I will, naturally, welcome comments from Osterley and Spring Grove residents.

TL 25.5.2021

© Tony Louki 2021 – No reproduction of any part without permission

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Filed under College Road, Hounslow Highways, Leisure, Middlesex, Neighbourhoods, Osterley, Parks, RAs, Reports, Road works, Roads, Schools, Spring Grove, Thornbury Park, Thornbury Road, Traffic, Wyke Green

Work commences on former petrol station site

A twelve year wait for any sustainable action on the former Syon Gate Garage site at the corner of Syon Lane and Great West Road is about to end as owners, Access Self Storage, are about to implement the permission granted by Hounslow Council Planning Committee on 2 May 2019.

The site looking south east

This will be a maximum six storey, storage only development as opposed to earlier ambitions for something more than twice the size including residential.

As with all these major schemes, permission was given subject to a fair few conditions just being finalised, including the all important to residents at least, Construction Logistics Plan. This suggests a six stage build sequence through to around September 2021 although mostly indoors and describes delivery vehicle routes (Great West Road, Syon Lane, Northumberland Avenue), hours of operation (should be, Monday to Friday 08.00 to 18.00, Saturday 0.900 to 13.00, not on Sunday or a Bank Holiday without council permission) and a fair bit more.

A contractor, Harmonix Construction, has been appointed as has a Project Manager, Troy Hunter, whose email is troy@harmonixconstruction.com and telephone is 079 3950 9552.

Artist impression looking west from Harlequin Avenue

Construction, starting with piling, should commence in mid-June 2020.

I have asked for regularly delivered bulletins for residents, the maisonettes from Northumberland Gardens to at least to Redesdale Gardens and nearby homes on Great West Road. The first issue can be found here.

Will make a change from the unauthorised site incursions experienced by residents.

Finally, the developer has advised to expect an amending planning application looking to increase the height by approximately 1.5m to address a need to increase internal floor to ceiling heights.

TL 20.5.2020

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

Exhibition this Tuesday 18.6.2019: Revision of Osterley Station flats proposal

Transport for London’s preferred developer, Apartments for London, received a fair amount of stick when first suggesting that a development of 118 flats within up to nine storeys, in December 2018.

Residents learning more about Apartments for London latest proposals at Osterley Station

The latest idea is for 68 units within a development of three to six storeys on part of the Osterley Station Car Park. A copy of the proposal may be found here.

There will be an exhibition of the new proposal this Tuesday 18 June 2019 between 2.00 pm and 8.00 pm at the Indian Gymkhana, Thornbury Avenue, Isleworth, Middlesex, TW7 4NQ where the architects and developer will be present to explain, justify and respond to questions.

If interested, please attend to see the new scheme and make comment. As always, Osterley and Spring Grove Ward Councillors would also be interested to learn from residents what they think, too.

 

TL  17.6.2019

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Filed under Council Business, Events, Great West Road, Middlesex, Neighbourhoods, Osterley, Planning, TfL

The Biggest Ward in Hounslow Borough: Planning updates

There is often a misconception that local authorities are in charge of everything and can influence anything but the basic fact is that Hounslow Council is only able to deliver within the various Acts of Parliament made at Westminster.

In terms of town planning, the council is mainly limited by the content of the Town and Country Planning Act 1990. Applicants turned down at the first stage of a planning application have a right to appeal to the government Planning Inspectorate and an aggrieved objector, for a fee, can also apply to the court for a judicial review; sometimes either may be pursued all the way to the Supreme Court.

So, todays wee update on aspirations familiar, new, and Oh! No, not that one again, advises of planning at its various stages here, in Osterley and Spring Grove Ward. Planning reference numbers are cited should anyone wish to seek more details on the Hounslow Council website Planning pages using the reference numbers quoted.

Should anyone wish to comment on so far undetermined applications, please write to planningcomments@hounslow.gov.uk

Adini, 891 Great West Road, TW7 5PD Ref: P/2017/5069

Southern elevation of approved Adini residential to Northumberland Avenue

Readers will recall a couple of applications from the owner operators of this site, one to modernise Adini’s commercial facilities, retaining the façade and another for residential to enable the development of the first. The council planning committee refused both applications but the applicant successfully appealed the housing element and the decision is explained here in the planning inspector’s letter.

Former Shell Garage and Contitrades House aka Gillette South Ref: P/2018/4691

Access Self Storage proposal: corner of Northumberland Avenue

This is the site on the corner of Northumberland Avenue and Syon Lane, much loved by itinerant waste collectors. Bar occasional open storage and a brief incarnation in 2017 as a temporary car park for BSkyB, this site was razed in 2008 in preparation for its development as a self storage facility then.

These past five years, the Canada based owners of Access Self Storage have made a number approaches to Hounslow Council Planners to build high and wide on this prominent corner site. Keenly scrutinised by residents and ward councillors the owners have come up with for what some may say is a more humane proposal which is likely to be taken to the council’s Planning Committee on Thursday 2 May 2019.

Osterley Station, Great West Road, TW7 4PU Ref: P/2019/0706

An application for lifts from street to platform level was approved before this councillor’s time back in 2009 but did not get built. A more refined scheme has now been submitted by Transport for London as part of the London Mayor’s ambition to improve access for all to the Underground.

Osterley Station Westbound platform where one of the lifts access would locate

There are some excellent architectural and railway history documents accompanying this application well worth viewing and the substantive commented upon:design and access statement; heritage statement.

Osterley Station Car Park

Readers will recall the December 2018 exhibition at the Indian Gymkhana with displays of proposals for housing on the Osterley Station car park. Following this event, Osterley and Spring Grove Councillors met with the optioned developer, Apartments for London, to feed back our own, and reiterating residents’, thoughts on their ambitions.

So far, no one has come back to us with either a planning application for what the developer originally hoped for or a suggested alternative but as soon as they do, a new exhibition and open meeting will be sought and residents advised and invited.

Domino’s 558 London Road, TW7 4EP Ref: P/2018/0741

In February 2018, the operator of this franchise applied to change their hours of operation from between 09.00 and 22.30 Monday to Saturday and 09.00 to 22.00 Sundays and Bank Holidays to 09.00 to 05.00 Daily, throughout the year. Planning officers considered both the application and responses from neighbours and refused the application and as a result the operator appealed to the Planning Inspector. The report giving reasons for refusal (mainly increased noise and disturbance affecting nearby residents during the night) has already been shared locally but can also be found here.

The inspector has begun the appeal process and has written to the council requesting any further comment from planners as well as residents. That letter can be found here and responses must be submitted in time for a 23 April 2019 deadline.

The appellant’s submission to the Inspector can be found here.

Farm Fried Chicken 481 London Road, TW7 4BX Refs: P/2019/1313 and P/2019/1318

481 London Road, Isleworth

In response to a local resident spotting a sign going up over these hitherto obscured premises, I raised various planning, conservation and licensing queries with numerous specialist council officers on 14 February 2019. At the time of writing, I appreciate the good work of the council’s planning enforcement team in getting (at least meagre) formal applications for the illuminated sign and change of use class from A3 (restaurant) to A5 (hot food takeaway).

To try to understand the applications, the only items to go by are drawings that attempt to regularise the sign and the change of use class.

Hours of operation of the takeaway are a licensing matter and should an application be made, will be shared here.

Warren Motors 585-603 London Road TW7 4EJ Ref: P/2019/0448

Once a common main road feature, the vehicle showroom is gradually disappearing, AFN Porsche and Marlborough Motors have long become Isleworth memories.

There is now a current application for the redevelopment of the Warren Motors site to provide two residential buildings of between part five and part eight stories to achieve 93 flats (comprising three studios, 43 one, 38 two and 4 three-bedroom flats).

The applicant’s agent has stated that the reason they have not held an exhibition or meeting is that the, “consultation process carried out by the Local Authority during the planning application will be more than sufficient. To carry out more engagement above and beyond this prior to the planning application consultation could risk causing consultation fatigue”. I have advised the Hounslow planners that I would be willing to chair a local event on this matter.

Telecoms mast opposite West and Penwerris Courts, Great West Road, TW5 0TJ (previously Ref: P/2016/5062)

 

A bit unusual this in the sense that from what I recall, wannabe applicants run their proposals by councillors first before making formal applications

On studying the telecoms company’s proposal there is little difference, in fact perhaps more obtrusive, to another proposal at the exact same spot in late 2016 which caused great concern locally and was refused by this local authority.

Almost all residents that would potentially face any equipment live in Osterley and Spring Grove Ward as well as the new Oaklands School.

Please forward any comments direct to me, tony.louki@hounslow.gov.uk or other Ward councillors for passing on to the council planners.

TL 14.4.2019

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Filed under Council Business, Great West Road, Housing, Licensing, London Road, Middlesex, Neighbourhoods, Northumberland Estate, Osterley, Planning, RAs, Spring Grove, TfL, Traffic

Macfarlane Lane Sports Ground: New school proposal presentation on 23.2.2017

A presentation from the architects and promoters of a new free school on the council owned and current Grasshoppers site off Syon Lane, Isleworth will be made at Hounslow Council’s Planning Development Presentation meeting on Thursday 23 February 2017 starting 7.30 pm in the Council Chamber at Hounslow Civic Centre, Lampton Road, Hounslow, Middlesex, TW3 4DN.

Hounslow Civic Centre from Lampton Park

Hounslow Civic Centre from Lampton Park

Planning presentation meetings are where promoters of developments show their ideas to members of the council planning committee prior to the submission of a formal planning application.

bolder-academy-header1

So far, there is just one item on the agenda, a proposal for the “demolition of existing club house and construction of a two to four storey, 1,150 pupil secondary school, including ancillary access, parking, sports pitches and multi use games area” for the as yet to be established, mixed and non religious Bolder Academy.  The proposed school was one of the items presented and discussed at the OWGRA meeting on 6 December 2016.

Residents are welcome to attend the meeting as observers but are not allowed to speak although I would welcome any appropriate questions to convey during the proceedings.

TL  11.2.2017

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Filed under Council Business, Education, Middlesex, Neighbourhoods, Osterley, Planning, Schools, Wyke Green