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Minet Conservation Area: MCA response to Draft Character Appraisal document

  • 18 Mar 2016 7:17 PM
    Message # 3889817
    Chair (Administrator)

    Minet Conservation Area - Draft Character Appraisal

    Response by the Minet Conservation Association

    13 March 2016

    The Minet Conservation Association (MCA) welcomes the publication of Lambeth’s draft Conservation Area Appraisal for the Minet Conservation Area. This presents a welcome opportunity to highlight the quality and consistency of the assets in the conservation area, but should also help to establish appropriate planning guidance for development in the conservation area as part of the next step in the process.

    The MCA welcomes the level of detail given in the description of the history and the standing fabric. We do however wish to raise an issue that is highly significant for the future of this conservation area; this is that the appraisal does not highlight that the important community assets that were at the heart of the development of the area overall are all at risk, and their fabric and medium to long term future are uncertain:

    • the parish church has already been converted into flats and has lost its community function;
    • the secondary school is vacant and suffering from neglect and deterioration, and its future use is uncertain;
    • the future of the library is equally uncertain; despite the efforts of a local group who have put forward a plan to renovate the building and create proper facilities for the Archives and maintain the library, it would appear that the Council is intent on turning it into a gym which does not in our view constitute a beneficial or viable long term use and puts the library further at risk;
    • the park, at the heart of the community, is still in a reasonable state of repair but has seen its funding decimated and its upkeep threatened;
    • many of the historic shop units on the south side of Denmark Road have been converted to residential uses and this has contributed to the loss of vibrancy in the neighbourhood.

    Were the above community and commercial buildings or their original community uses lost, or if their fabric deteriorated any further, this would have a severe negative impact on the character and appearance of the conservation area which Lambeth Council are obligated to protect by law.

    The Minet area is under threat of losing its character and become no more than a 19th century housing estate; if this were to occur Lambeth would have failed their legal duty to preserve or enhance the conservation are a as stipulated in the Planning (Listed Buildings and Conservation Areas) 1990 Act.

    We therefore urge Lambeth Council to make it clear in their appraisal that a) the Minet area was originally built as a fully functioning community with community assets in place (with paragraphs 2.8 and 2.12 of your appraisal elaborated upon), b) that some of the community assets are in a poor state of repair, and that some assets have already changed character for the worse through the loss of their original use, including the church, school and many of the shops, and c) that the character of the conservation area would change further and to its detriment if some of the remaining important community assets were to lose their original community use. Your paragraph 2.97 this is concerned with uses is insufficient in this regard.

    We would also raise with you that the absence of parking controls mean that the character and appearance of the conservation area has been compromised; not only are many roads saturated with parked cars, in some instances cars are being left for long periods of time and this leads to vandalism, resulting in a degradation of the historic environment and streetscene.

    We appreciate that the character appraisal is there to give an account of the history and current fabric of the area and is not a policy document. It is however crucial that it lays the groundwork for policy, and as it stands the document does not do this.

    We urge you to review and amend the document accordingly and would be very pleased to assist in any way we can.



  • 14 Apr 2016 6:52 PM
    Reply # 3953850 on 3889817
    Deleted user

    Slightly further afield, but still really important to the Minet Area. The start of the dialogue about Station Rd, and a station? LB Southwark is going to be developing a business case for regeneration/ opening the station. Let's make sure our issue/concerns are heard.


    Southwark Living Streets led Camberwell Station Road walkabout  is Saturday 23rd April at 3pm – meeting outside the Bear PH, 296A Camberwell New Rd, SE5 0RP.  


    Hope to see you there.  

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