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Saturday, 27 August 2016

CHELSEA MORNINGS BY ADEBANJI ALADE


The Dame's PR lady tells her a picture speaks a thousand words so the Dame never flaunts herself.

However, these wonderful pictures of our beloved Chelsea speak for themselves.

You can read more about Adebanji HERE

They are the work of the Dame's great friend and Chelsea artist, Adebanji Alade.
Adebanji loves Chelsea and his work has been commissioned by many local residents and businesses.


The exhibition runs until 10th September at Chelsea Framers, 341 King's Rd.

Wednesday, 24 August 2016

CLLR WADE CALLS OUT CAPCO

The Dame is a lady but sees corporate bullshit when it stares her in the face. 
Donny Gordon
Capco Boss
No friend of the poor
Capco can see profits collapsing on Earl's Court.
So dire are things young(and extremely nice) Graeme Gordon has had to dip into his pocket and buy a couple of penthouses. 
Now the wily CEO of Capco has written this nonsense(in red).
He gives the impression ruthless Capco wants to help the homeless; in fact all they want to do is intensify Earl's Court development to offset the huge losses faced.

Well done, Cllr Wade for 'calling out' these Jo'burg rogues.

“We have an existing planning permission for 7,500 new homes, but we’ve just suggested to the Greater London Authority that it could accommodate 10,000 homes and we want to play a role in providing as many homes as possible in London”  

Cllr Wade says.....

"Ian Hawksworth, Daily Telegraph on 26 July, 2016, The boss of Capco (the developers of the Earl’s Court site).

So, what are these new homes going to look like, and are they the homes that we need? Will they provide homes for working Londoners and will our Keyworkers be able to afford them, either for rent or shared ownership?

Throughout the consultation, residents were repeatedly told by officers that if there were changes to the Masterplan then the planning permissions would have to be called-in.
There are a lot of questions that need to be answered.

Will the ‘intensification’ be distributed over the entire 77-acre Opportunity Area or will it place additional pressure on the 22-acres within RBKC? We need to know.

The proposed increase of 31% is a material change and therefore the Council should be prepared to call-in the planning application. This is not a just a cosmetic change to design, and not something that can just be passed without consultation with residents.

With these changes, and increased uncertainty, where is our replacement for the Earl’s Court Exhibition Centre and what further impact will it have on Earl’s Court businesses.
This is a re-think of the Masterplan, this will change the demographics of the site and place further pressures on our local infrastructure: road, tube, schools and GPs.

Many feel that the ‘improvements’ put forward within the present planning permission failed to deal with the existing problems of the area: air quality, traffic and shortage of primary and secondary schools, so it is hoped that with a ‘new vision’ there will be an opportunity to create a more integrated community where people live and homes are homes and not just for investment.
This is where we live, we need to know and we need to be consulted. "

SIGN THE PETITION AND HELP SAVE THE WONDERFUL FARMERS' MARKET

Typically King's Rd
There was a time when King's Road teemed with interesting independent shops. Recent decades have seen all that change. Sky high rents and rapacious business rates made life impossible for niche retailers. This world famous road is now just an expanse of dreary and depressing foreign-owned chains, such as the hideous McDonalds.
If you love what is still special about Chelsea you should really care about the imminent destruction of the Farmers' Market. Its vibrantly eclectic collection of colourful and, more importantly, independent retailers, attract thousands of residents and visitors each week
DP9, the scheming, and devious planning consultants, submitted plans to raze the market to the ground and replace something we love with something we hate....more luxury flats for dodgy foreign investors.
So why did DP9 lodge the application in the midst of the main holiday season? 
There is only one explanation; their plan was to minimise objections. Was RBK&C in cahoots over this dishonest ploy? 
The question hangs in the air.....
Fortunately, in spite of DP9, over 150 objections were lodged.
The Farmers' Market is without any doubt an asset of community value and its potential destruction needs to be discussed at a full council meeting.
So we all have to sign the online petition urgently.
The Dame loves the Farmers' Market as much as you all do. Please sign the petition HERE it will take just seconds.





Friday, 12 August 2016

KCTMO? NOTHING TO DO WITH US, GUV










The Kensington & Chelsea TMO has responsibility for the safekeeping of a vast number of resident owned assets, yet this curious reply to a FOI indicates oversight is minimal, or non-existent.



FREEDOM OF INFORMATION ACT REQUEST REF: 2016-0977 
I am responding to your request under the Freedom of Information Act 2000, which we received on 4 August 2016, for information held by the Council. You requested: 
1. The total number of KCTMO members at each Annual KCTMO AGM for the past 10 years? 
2. The total number of votes cast at each Annual KCTMO AGM for the past 10 years? 
3. The total cost to transport KCTMO members and residents to the Annual KCTMO AGM for each AGM for the past 10 years? 
4. The total number KCTMO members and residents who have been transported by means paid for by the KCTMO to each AGM for the past 10 years? 
5. The total number KCTMO votes cast in favour of Robert Black since he has been CEO of KCTMO at each AGM where he has been up for election? 
6. Please disclose the procedure and qualifications for applying for funding to transport people to the AGM from TMO properties? 
The Council do not hold the information requested. 
KCTMO as a company is not subject to the Freedom of Information Act on its internal operation, AGM or member matters, it is only subject to the legislation in relation to information held on behalf of RBKC (which generally relates to housing matters - and this request does not fall into that category of matter).

Thursday, 11 August 2016

CLEAN OUT THE AUGEAN STABLES....GET RID OF ROBERT BLACK AND CLLR CONDON-SIMMONDS

Two topics generate huge volumes of viewings and comment on the Hornet

They are both interconnected....Cllr Condon-Simmonds and the KCTMO.

The performance of both casts great dark shadows over the Council.

It is time Robert Black was replaced at the TMO and Cllr Condon-Simmonds forced to retire.


Monday, 8 August 2016

QUESTION...WHY DOES CLLR SIMMONDS SUPPORT THE RILEY ARMS.....

Shameful Behaviour

Dear Councillor Simmonds,

SHAME ON YOU !!!!!!!

FOR LETTING RESIDENTS DOWN ONCE MORE !!!!!  

YOU ARE THE ONLY PERSON TO HAVE COMMENTED IN FAVOUR OF THE THE RILEY ARMS PUBLIC HOUSE PLANNING APPLICATION !!!!

WHY  WOULD YOU NOT SUPPORT RESIDENTS ????

In your comment you omit to mention that the planning application is not for the refurbishment of the present layout, which residents favour, but to build an open patio at the back in front of children's bedrooms, open an entrance at the back on Ann Lane and open the whole front with by fold doors.

32 oppositions have been logged against this application. These include two residents associations, the police and The Chelsea Society.

WHY WOULD YOU SUPPORT SOMETHING THAT WILL ADVERSELY AFFECT CHILDREN'S LIVES  AND THE MOST VULNERABLE  ???

This pub extension will be next to the homes of elderly and disabled residents and many young children's bedrooms will overlook it .

Children will be forced to have their bedroom curtains closed during the day in order to avoid witnessing drug taking and drug dealing outside their homes. It is 'known' that groups of patrons congregate smoking drugs on residents' entrances at the back of the pub during daylight hours on a daily basis. Children are forced to walk through these groups as they come home from school. The building of a patio at the back and an extra exit will further blight our children's lives. 

Concertina doors are proposed at the front on the Kings Road. This will open the front of the pub seven days a week from 10 am to 11 pm . Mothers with young children at present desperately try to avoid the leery comments and the frequent sexual references as they force their way through crowds of drunks on the way to the supermarket on a daily basis. Having larger crowds will further compound the feeling of entrapment as they suffer this onslaught of antisocial and criminal behaviour at the front and at the back of the pub. They have no choice but to face this on a daily basis as they walk to the supermarket, shops and bus stop. 

Many of us have worked very hard to improve the lives of the most vulnerable and in particular the children in our community as they are our future.

By all means refurbish the pub, BUT ... DON'T SUPPORT THE INSTALLATION OF FOLDING DOORS AT THE FRONT AND AN EXTRA EXIT AND AN OPEN COURTYARD AT THE BACK !!!!!

WE ARE APPALLED THAT NOT ONLY HAVE YOU TURNED A BLIND EYE TO WHAT HAS BEEN GOING ON SINCE THE NEW OWNERSHIP TOOK OVER A YEAR AGO, BUT ARE OPENLY IGNORING THE BEST INTERESTS OF RESIDENTS !!

YOU DO NOT LIVE IN THE PROXIMITY OF THE PUB THEREFORE ARE NOT QUALIFIED TO MAKE COMMENTS ON BEHALF OF THOSE THAT DO !!

Friday, 5 August 2016

MISARA AND THE SLOANE STREET PLANS

The Dame is frequently and unfairly accused by the mean-minded of having her favourites.

This is untrue. The Dame has been open in suggesting Sloane Street, not least because it has become a race track for the idle and ill-mannered boy racers from the Middle East, needs improvement.
The debate is now on and everybody has the opportunity to comment.
At the request of MISARA she provides its detailed evaluation of the proposed scheme






                    MILNER STREET AREA RESIDENTS’ ASSOCIATION
                                                      milnerresidents@pobox.com



Sloane Street Consultation, July 2016: Response from the Milner Street Area Residents’ Association to RBK&C

Introduction

1. On 29 June 2016, the Milner Street Area Residents’ Association (“MISARA”) received from Gary Noble, Chief Engineer, RBK&C, a consultation paper (which he described as a “newsletter”) setting out the Council’s proposals for making changes to Sloane Street. The consultation paper mentioned that further details of the proposals could be viewed at an exhibition at 135 Sloane Street during the period 6-9 July.  Despite the short notice, a number of members of MISARA were able to visit the exhibition and have given their reactions.  In brief, no member of MISARA has yet shown support for the scheme.

Hans Town Conservation Area Statement

2. We wish to remind the Council of the Hans Town Conservation Area Proposals Statement (January 2000) which states (p.46): “Sloane Square branches off southwards from Knightsbridge in a long uninterrupted vista line towards Sloane Square. The most characteristic visual element of the street is the long expanse of the mature gardens of Cadogan Place on its east side. In addition, the sense of openness of the street is established by the generous pavement and road widths. Sympathetic tree planting is effective in nullifying the overpowering effect of the imposing buildings which line the thoroughfare and help minimise the disruptive effect of the incessant through traffic.” The emphases are ours.

3. Referring to the junction between Sloane Street and Basil Street, it states (p.44): “At this point, the incessant presence of heavy through traffic begins to dominate the character of the townscape”.

4. It states further (p.126): “One of the most distinctive elements of Hans Town’s townscape character is the large, almost park-like gardens of Cadogan Place and Cadogan Square…..Cadogan Place and Hans Place…..are included within the “Register of Parks and Gardens of Special Historic Interest in England” compiled by English Heritage. Such a designation highlights the fragile character of such areas and the need to protect their special character.”

5. In addition to the above statements, with which MISARA fully concurs, the principal characteristic of Sloane Street is that it is a major arterial route for buses, cars  and heavy construction traffic, with northbound traffic facing severe congestion from south of the Basil Street junction up to Knightsbridge. This section of the street, which takes only a couple of minutes to walk, can take 15 minutes in a bus.

Pedestrians and Bus Passengers

6. It is striking how few pedestrians there are in the central section of Sloane Street. The reasons are obvious: (i) the shops are concentrated at the Knightsbridge and Sloane Square ends of the street, whereas the central section is predominantly residential and commercial, (ii) many shoppers may wish to visit shops at one or other end of the street but not both, and (iii) for those shoppers (or other pedestrians) wishing to go from one end of the street to the other, it is a relatively long walk and they may take the bus instead. In short, the pedestrian becomes a bus passenger. The relative lack of pedestrians in the central section has nothing to do with the pavements being too narrow (they aren’t) or the “pedestrian environment” (to use the Council’s words) being insufficiently “friendly” (it isn’t).

7. The consultation paper wholly fails to recognise that if any group of people is disadvantaged by the current setting of the street, it is bus passengers rather than pedestrians. RBK&C’s priority for Sloane Street should be to make life easier for bus passengers by improving traffic flow at the top. It is extraordinary that the consultation paper does not even acknowledge the existence of this problem, let alone seek to address it. In fact the consultation paper does not even mention the word “bus”.

8.  To mitigate the problem, we recommend removing the traffic lights at the Basil Street junction and prohibiting traffic from Basil Street turning right into Sloane Street. If this does not prove adequate, we recommend that consideration be given to (i) reversing the direction of traffic in Basil Street from one way eastbound to one way westbound (coupled with prohibiting southbound traffic in Sloane Street from turning right into Basil Street), or (ii) blocking off the junction altogether (in which event consideration could be given to pedestrianising the east end of Basil Street), though the impact of these alternatives on traffic diversion into other streets would need to be carefully assessed.

9. Members of MISARA have reacted with incredulity to the statement in the consultation paper that the Council would like to “reduce vehicle dominance by narrowing the width of the road, where it would not adversely affect traffic flow”. Any such narrowing would be bound to have an adverse effect on traffic flow. In the worst case, traffic in both directions would be obliged to queue in single file, adding greatly to journey times and to diesel pollution (negating one of the Council’s objectives we warmly support, to improve local air quality). Far from making the “pedestrian experience” more “friendly”, it would have the opposite effect.

10. The statement mentioned above implies that the Council would not wish traffic flow to be adversely affected.  However, we were aghast to discover, at the exhibition, that the Council was promoting, as a “possible enhancement” to Sloane Street, not only widening the pavements but also introducing “raised pedestrian crossings……..which would help decrease the speed of traffic”.  The admission is telling.  It would have been clearer if the Council had simply stated in its consultation paper that it actually wants traffic in Sloane Street to become even slower.  We do not regard this as an “enhancement”.

11. Nor do we agree that “making it easier and safer to cross the road” provides any justification for widening the pavements or slowing down the traffic. We find crossing the road quite easy and safe as it is, at places designed for the purpose; if it is considered that there are too few such places, we suggest adding a couple of traffic islands instead. There used to be a traffic island near the junction with Cadogan Gardens – why has this not been replaced?

12. The artist’s impressions of what Sloane Street would look like with wider pavements and municipal flower beds, reproduced both in the consultation paper and at the exhibition, are in real danger of misleading the consultees and, as a result, of obtaining a false result from the consultation, as they do not show the traffic jams that would result from implementation of the scheme but, on the contrary, almost no traffic at all. We particularly deplore the artist’s impression of the Knightsbridge end of Sloane Street, which portrays only one bus and only half of one car driving in the street. This is not how it is, or (still less) how it would be if the scheme were to be implemented.

13. We are reminded uncomfortably of the misleading artist’s impressions designed to encourage support in the early consultations for the Council’s scheme to turn Sloane Square into a crossroads, from which traffic was also virtually absent.  It was clear at the outset that those consultations were  an illusory exercise  designed to provide the Council with justification for what it had already decided to do. We hope that the consultation on Sloane Street will not be the start of a similar process.

Trees and Greenery

14. As noted in the Conservation Area Statement, one of the finest features of Sloane Street is the abundant greenery provided by the gardens and trees. We are astonished to read the statement in the consultation paper that in Sloane Street “there are few trees and little greenery other than the private gardens”. This is rather like saying that in Exhibition Road there is little to see other than the museums. The statement that there are “few trees” in Sloane Street is most extraordinary – have the Council been looking at the wrong street? Why have they ignored their own Conservation Area Statement?

15. There are three sections of Sloane Street in which we feel that planting new trees would be beneficial: (i) outside the Danish Embassy building, to help conceal it – although this building would undoubtedly be impressive in another context, it is strikingly discordant with its surroundings by virtue of its colour, materials and design; (ii) four or five trees could usefully be added outside numbers 28-35 on the west side of the street, to help conceal views of the ugly Millennium Hotel;
and (iii) outside numbers 163-165 on the east side of the street, to help conceal the drab building which forms this block.

16. We strongly oppose the introduction of municipal flower beds at the base of the trees, as they would detract from the setting of the individual trees and from the splendid green vistas noted in the Conservation Area Statement.



Street Furniture

17. We are concerned to read the claim in the consultation paper that “the street furniture is unco-ordinated and the pavements look cluttered”. We recall that the same tendentious assertions were made by the Council a few years ago to justify its unwelcome scheme to remove the black street lamps in the King’s Road and replace them with modern silvered coloured lamps, and to remove the heritage-style bins, benches and bollards and replace them with stainless steel equivalents. Fortunately the benches and bollards have survived, following protests from residents, but the street lamps have been duly replaced, at unnecessary cost.

18. In fact the pavements in Sloane Street are spacious and do not have a cluttered feel. There are a few cabinets, two telephone boxes, no benches and only one bollard. An element of co-ordination already exists in that the street lamps and street furniture – like the many attractive railings in the street – are painted black. This important feature of the street should be preserved, and the introduction of a “consistent and co-ordinated furniture palette” (specified at the exhibition as a “possible enhancement”) should be resisted.

19. We would have no objection to the removal of unnecessary street furniture, and our recommendations for the Basil Street junction (in paragraph 8) would help in this respect. We recommend retention of the black heritage-style bollard at the corner of Cadogan Gardens, as we fear that (if removed) it would just be replaced by a stainless steel equivalent later on. We would have no objection to installing some benches outside the shops, provided that these are heritage-style and painted dark green or black.

20. We see no justification at all for replacing the street lamps. We note the ominous reference in the consultation paper to introducing “a co-ordinated palette of materials and street furniture……to provide better street lighting”. We do not consider the street lighting in Sloane Street to be inadequate. If the Council wish to provide better lighting, this should be achieved by the use of stronger light bulbs. We do not want a repetition of the unhappy experience in the King’s Road.

21. The red telephone box on the west side of the northern end of the street has been imaginatively converted into dual use as a cash machine: it is of traditional design and should be retained. We would have no objection to the removal of the metal telephone box on the west side below Pont Street, as it is ugly and in recent years has been used not so much for making telephone calls as for the advertisement of personal services.

22. We were surprised to see the introduction of “gateways at access points” and “street identifying and wayfinding” displays described, at the exhibition, as “possible enhancements” to Sloane Street. These are unnecessary and unwelcome – surely the best place for maps is at bus stops – and not consistent with the Council’s professed aversion to clutter.

Street Paving

23. We are concerned to read the Council’s assertion in the consultation paper that “the street is starting to look tired and in need of refreshing”, as we recall that this was the very same claim made by the Council to justify its scheme to turn Sloane Square into a crossroads. If it means anything, it is that the Council has failed to maintain the pavements in accordance with appropriately high standards.

24. The Council appears to acknowledge this in the Conservation Area Statement, which states (p.153): “Yorkstone has traditionally been the material of the area’s pavements. Unfortunately past removal has entailed that few of the area’s streets are faced in this most attractive of materials. Many streets would be enhanced through the reinstatement of Yorkstone.  However, given the high costs…..total reinstatement may not be a realistic option in the foreseeable future.”

25. We understand that the Cadogan Estate is willing to pay some of the cost of making improvements to Sloane Street, and that support may also be available from TfL through its major street contribution fund. We recommend that the Cadogan Estate and TfL be encouraged to concentrate their support on proper Yorkstone reinstatement, to remedy the Council’s deficiencies. We do not wish to see experimental paving such as the unattractive “shared street” paving outside Sloane Square underground station or garish paving like that in Exhibition Road.

Further Consultation

26. We note the statement in the consultation paper that “local communities and businesses are at the heart of our plans”. We were therefore surprised to discover that the only residents to whom the consultation paper was delivered were those living within a narrow strip bounded by Pavilion Road and Cadogan Place. This is inadequate, and does not show that the Council has local communities at the heart of its plans. We wonder whether those residents also, like ourselves, received the consultation paper at very short notice before the exhibition. If there is to be a further consultation in the autumn, as indicated at the exhibition, the new consultation materials should be circulated to all residents living within (say) ten minutes’ walk from Sloane Street, and at least three weeks’ notice of any future exhibition given.

27. As importantly, if the Council genuinely wishes to discover residents’ views, it should draw up new consultation papers and exhibits in an unbiased and even handed manner, avoiding tendentious assertions.  It should not be a one sided exercise, designed to draw the reader towards the Council’s desired conclusion. We would welcome the opportunity of being able to review and comment on new consultation materials in draft before circulation, to check them for impartiality.

Conclusion

28. We believe that the Council’s analysis of the issues facing Sloane Street is fundamentally flawed. It  fails to identify the main problem affecting users of the street, and is instead based  on the identification of “problems” which do not actually exist. Most of the “possible enhancements” portrayed at the exhibition would be retrograde and unwelcome. We cannot see how   the Council’s scheme can be amended to make it acceptable.

29. We call on the Council to withdraw the scheme, and to take action instead to mitigate congestion at the north end of the street (paragraph 8), to reinstate high quality Yorkstone paving (paragraphs 24-25) and to initiate a modest programme of tree planting (paragraph 15) to supplement the wonderful green vistas we already enjoy.


Lord Grantley (8 Halsey Street, London SW3 2QH) and Mrs Margaret Moore (13 Moore Street, London SW3 2QN)

Co-chairmen, Milner Street Area Residents’ Association

Wednesday, 27 July 2016

DP9, PLANNING CONSULTANTS/ENEMIES OF THE PEOPLE OF THIS BOROUGH





Whenever K&C residents are shafted by developers nasty, greedy DP9 will be found lurking in the background.
Its relationship with K&C Planners is so close that the surprise is that they don't have a bed or two at the Town Hall.
One wonders what planning officer, 'Flighty' Flight thinks of that idea...
DP9 was behind Capco's ill-fated Earls Court development and now we see them promoting the destruction of the Chelsea Farmers Market. 

It is a planning consultancy without scruples.
An example of their scruple-free way of doing business is the recommendation to the Royal Brompton Hospital to lodge its planning application in late July/August so as to minimise objections.
They told the Hospital Board most residents would be on holiday...and that is what has come to pass. 

The deadline for comment/objection is August 12th.

Let's show DP9 that there pathetic attempt to screw residents has failed by flooding RB&C with objections.

And, Mr Stallwood, planning boss, should make it a rule that no major developments can have objection periods ending in August; after all, it looks as if the Council is complicit in a dirty manoeuvre to minimise objections to a scheme we know they support.....

Attentive readers may remember how Alison'Flighty' Flight, a senior RBK&C planner gave a big, sloppy kiss to a senior member of the DP9 team. Why? 
Because she was so excited by their success in Earls Court. 

Maybe DP9 will employ her?

You can jog your memory HERE