stone-penge wrote: ↑
16 Mar 2019 09:54
Ok , but thats no precondition as I see it (a pre condition to what?) rather a desire that there might be some way to retain the gas holder structure , which I assume you are against, fair enough, and whilst you may feel that element is a waste of time given the decisions already taken on those structures that issue is hopefully just a small part of the masterplan exercise they are undertaking.
I note you talk of "guidance published by LB Lewisham on how this form of consultation should be conducted"
Obviously you know and must be comforted by the fact that this is not an official LBL exercise has no legal standing that I can see.
Firstly, The matter of Cllr Alan Hall who chaired the meeting making a proposal (do Chairs make proposals, normally it is the role of Chair to receive a proposal) that the meeting endorse the addition of the SydSoc and Discourse "Master Plan"
to LB Lewisham's local plan is where I perceive the problem to lie. First of all I don't recall the proposal getting a seconder nor do I recall a vote on the floor. This did not happen not least as the Chair and SydSoc had to acknowledge that they had not reached any significant numbers of immediate or near neighbours to the site from and particularly from SE6 or Perry Vale. It was from this point it was deemed that this significant omission had to be corrected and thus the invitation to make the presentation at the Bellingham Assembly. It was unclear at this stage how Perry Vale residents were to be addressed. An issue that remains unclear today.
Secondly, it is evident that SydSoc have used the same method for a second time to extend their invitation on an "all welcome" basis. How is it to be anticipated that this method will reach any of the potential attendees that it failed to reach the first time round ? Additionally, Bellingham ward attendees made Cllr Hall and Cllr Paschoud aware that invitations to the Bellingham Ward Assembly and the associated agendas were no longer being delivered to ward constituents - this they promised to address.
Thirdly, LB Lewisham have published a news item that reports that Mayor Damien Egan has congratulated the parties that a Community Led Master Plan being led by SydSoc was underway and he welcomed that output.
So is the term pre-condition right ? Probably yes. SydSoc see the retention of the gas-holders as being the key focal point, if not the sole driver, for their involvement and getting it into the local plan, even though they may be demolished before the "Master Plan" is complete and submitted to the authority. A relevant test would be to have an open vote on who wants to retain them and who does not. Will Discourse and SydSoc be so enthusiastic if the vote delivers an endorsement of the decision to demolish the gas-holders ? But it will be viewed by SydSoc as a hugely significant step if they can get the retention of the gas-holders articulated as an item for inclusion in the local plan.
It is extremely disappointing that Mayor Damian Egan believes it to be the case that this is a community led consultation. The make-up of the meeting itself revealed that there is no valid claim to be made that it is community led and is in fact a single issue exercise being conducted by and for SydSoc who have zero representation, zero consultation and zero accountability in the vicinity of the gas holders. Perhaps it is the case that the mayor should receive a more factually accurate report on the details of what is and what is not happening.
I have spoken to SGN after the meeting. In return they presented their official position.
They confirmed that a meeting with SydSoc and Cllrs had taken place on site. They confirmed that they believed that this was a genuinely representative body for local residents They confirmed several additional points including the fact that they advised attendees that inter alia
retention of the gas-holders was not feasible for a multitude of reasons including costs and the complexity and price of a maintenance regime for them.
They expressed deep concern to be advised that the attendees were NOT representative of local residents nor of local residents' opinion as no consultation had been undertaken to establish what those opinions might be.
SGN confirmed that the demolition in the full is underway and that they have no plans to hand to consider a "hold" or postponement of that work. Dismantling work on the ribs will commence within a matter of a few weeks.