From the Neighbours of Springfield Initiative
As you may be aware yesterday evening Wandsworth Borough Council’s planning committee voted to refuse permission for the outline planning application and listed building consent submitted by South West London and St George’s Mental Health NHS trust. The detail of the reasons for refusal are unclear at this time but rest assured the community will scrutinise closely the reasons for refusal, and if deemed necessary will make further representations to the relevant authorities to ensure that all concerns and objections are acknowledged and responded to.
Although we should feel great joy and pride in what we achieved in terms of ensuring that our voice was heard loud and clear, there is also a real sense of sadness. With the admirable aims of the health trust seeking to improve the facilities and with it the quality of care for some of the most vulnerable members of our community, once again it has gone through a long, expensive, and painful process only to be met with even greater public opposition to its proposals than last time.
The community need to now make representations to the trustees of the South West London and St George’s Mental Health NHS Trust not to pursue an appeal against the decision, and spend more public money, and waste time. But rather admit that errors were made, and to engage meaningfully with the community that will result in a proposal for the site that we can all be proud of that will not result in the community’s quality of life being damaged.
For such a complex scheme it is felt that a real shared vision is required to realise it. That approach needs to be taken on board not only by the health trust and the community but also the planning authorities and all of our elected representatives. Just because an all inclusive approach may take a little more time and effort from all those parties involved does not mean that they should not be prepared to go “the extra mile” to deliver a proposal of excellence on all fronts.
The steering committee of Neighbours of Springfield acknowledge and give our heartfelt thanks to:
• MP Sadiq Khan and his team for their support throughout the campaign.
• Ward councillors (Councillor Boswell, Clay, Daley, Heaster, Johnson and Tracey) for meeting with, and listening to, the community aswell as making powerful representations on the community’s behalf.
• Our Road Reps who pounded the streets night and day to spread our message.
• The biggest thanks though goes to each and every member of our community that sent letters and e-mails of objection to the planners, and members of the planning committee, (over 4000 and counting!!), and finally to all of you (over 300) that turned out to the committee meeting yesterday on a bitterly cold night, it did have a huge impact.
See more information on www.neighboursofspringfield.co.uk.Google+