Archived on 6/5/2022

Bell Green Neighbourhood Forum 27th November

27 Sep '21

This new trail is to allow people who have already signed up, or intend to sign up for the BGNF, to discuss items on the agenda for 31st October. Issues with the draft forum boundary? Questions about the draft Constitution? Let us know your thoughts ASAP, and give everyone a chance to think about it before the meeting.

9 Oct '21

What is a Neighbourhood Area?

Informal Advice Note, taken from Brighton City Council website.

Please note the following is informal guidance; the Localism Act 2011 Neighbourhood Planning (General) Regulations 2012 should be referred to for full accurate details.

Neighbourhood areas are defined areas for which neighbourhood development plans and orders can be made. It is intended to be a process led by the local community. Local planning authorities must apply the rules below when deciding on designating neighbourhood areas.
• Only one forum per neighbourhood area, neighbourhood areas cannot overlap.
• Within a parish, only the respective Parish Council can apply for a neighbourhood area (the neighbourhood area may be the whole or part of the parish, however, when determining an application, regard has to be given to the desirability of designating the whole of the area). • A neighbourhood area can cross two or more local planning authority boundaries.
• When designating a neighbourhood area a local planning authority may modify existing designations (only with a parish council’s consent when applicable, and regard has to be given to the desirability of maintaining existing boundaries of designated areas)
• When designating a neighbourhood area a local planning authority has to consider whether it is predominantly business in nature, and thus whether to designate it a business area
• The local planning authority has to publish a map setting out areas that are for the time being designated as neighbourhood areas, also identifying those that are business areas
• If the local planning authority refuse an application (in whole or part) it has to give reasons to the applicant Application for designation of a neighbourhood area Applications for the designation of a neighbourhood area must include all of the following
• A map identifying the area to which the application relates
• A statement explaining why this area is considered appropriate to be designated as a neighbourhood area

A statement that the organisation or body making the area application is a relevant body (eg a Parish Council or a body designated or capable of being a Neighbourhood Forum)
Process once an application has been submitted

Once an application has been submitted the City Council is required to undertake the following : “As soon as possible after receiving an area application from a relevant body, a local planning authority must publicise the following on their website and in such other manner as they consider is likely to bring the area application to the attention of people who live, work or carry on business in the area to which the area application relates —
• a copy of the area application;
• details of how to make representations; and
• the date by which those representations must be received, being not less than 6 weeks from the date on which the area application is first publicised”

Publicising a designation of a neighbourhood area etc

As soon as possible after designating a neighbourhood area, a local planning authority must publish the following on their website and in such other manner as they consider is likely to bring the designation to the attention of people who live, work or carry on business in the neighbourhood area —
• the name of the neighbourhood area;
• a map which identifies the area; and
• the name of the relevant body who applied for the designation.

As soon as possible after deciding to refuse to designate a neighbourhood area, a local planning authority must publish the following on their website, and in such other manner as they consider is likely to bring the refusal to the attention of people who live, work or carry on business in the neighbourhood area —

• a document setting out the decision and a statement of their reasons for making that decision (“the decision document”); and
• details of where and when the decision document may be inspected.

9 Oct '21

Draft Constitution, based on that of the Grove Park Neighbourhood Forum.


9 Oct '21

The Draft Boundaries.
Re-post of an item from March, outlining the thinking of the draft boundaries

"The Bell Green neighbourhood forum launch has been beset with people dragging their feet, so I thought I’d post my own draft boundaries. The decision to actually open the forum would be after a full democratic consultation, and all residents get a vote.

I’d really welcome a discussion about my suggested boundaries; which streets are affected by current and future developments at Bell Green?

For starters, my reasons for the suggested boundaries are:

  1. The stretch of Sydenham Road, east of the Kent House Road junction, was previously called Bell Green.
  2. Including the Linear Park right up to Catford allows environmental improvements to the River Pool, enhancing its biodiversity, and its emergency floodwater storage capacity. The approximate flood plain is marked in pale blue.
  3. Including Southend Park allows for the renaturalisation of the river, which flows under the park in a brick culvert.
  4. Including the whole stretch of Linear Park allows for potential upgrades of foot /cycle bridges across the railway and river into Bellingham.
  5. The inclusion of the main feeder routes into Bell Green, affected by any future traffic growth."

Let’s start the discussion here, while we wait for the next meeting on Sunday 31 October.

14 Oct '21

Bell Green Neighbourhood Forum

Meeting Minutes for 25 / 9 / 21 at the Catholic Club.

Cllr Liam Curran - Julia Webb & 15 Attendees ( & 4 late), including Cllr Rachel Onikosi

LC explained concept of Neighbourhood Forum – the need for a committee of 21, and suggested it could tackle new green spaces, new road layouts, and housing, to champion it through council planning, Back to NF. How the NF system works. Concept of 15 min neighbourhood.

JW – Explained her criteria for drawing up the draft boundaries. We could access government funding for emergency flooding relief by planning to renaturalise the River Pool, which is the reason for including the whole of RP in plan. Sydenham Road from Kent House road to the gyratory system was formerly named Bell Green. Perry Rise has been overloaded as a major feeder road into Bell Green. The Moremead strip, zone 3, was included so we can improve the pedestrian and cycle crossings of the railway, without intruding into Bellingham estate. The six zones are purely administrative, and designed for organising communications, including leafleting. The draft boundaries can be revised if necessary.

RO – How much of each ward is involved? JW – 4 zones are all-Bellingham ward, two zones are mixed wards.

Q – We get to decide Forum boundaries, and we’re not obliged to follow ward boundaries? JW yes.

Q – Can’t see problem between union of Bellingham and Sydenham. LC – reiterated that the forum was for the Bell Green area, not for Bellingham Ward.

RO – There has already been discussion to create a starting point but absolutely nothing is set in stone – we can look at other options.

LC – Thinks whole of Bellingham is too big an area for a forum to cover.

RO – The Bellingham Estate is the most deprived area of Bellingham ward. . JW – If a separate Bellingham Estate forum is set up, we could work together and coordinate

Q There’s been a lack of information about the previous meeting. JW – Info on [but apologies for lack of minutes, as this was overlooked. We desperately need help with secretarial tasks, and committee members.

LC – Asked for a show of hands on whether people would approve the existing map as a starting point – 16 for, 1 against.

Q - Are we starting again from Bell Green masterplan? LC – Essentially, but can use those as jumping off point. JW – Discourse Architecture generously did the proposals pro-bono.

JGD – Is deciding on the constitution at this point a wrong move? Concerned, and have spoken to local councillors.

LC – Legally, we need a constitution to get off the ground, so it’s necessary.

LC – Bank account needed – with Credit Union? They approved granting a bank account to formally established Forum in principle.

JGD – Allan Hall applied for £12,000 of s106 money to set off. This matter is still pending.

LC & JW – We urgently need volunteers for different roles–nominally, till Forum is set up formally, and an election is held in about six months time.

Chair LC.

Secretary JW

Social Media Catriona Ross.

Leafleting team

Zone 2: Noreen Quinn

Zone 5: Chris Carlisle (north of Sydenham Road)

Zone 6: James Evans (n. of Perry Rise)

Ros Honey (s. of Perry Rise)

We need more leafleters; one coordinator and at least two helpers for EACH ZONE.

Next meeting, Sunday 31st October at 2 pm at the Livesey Memorial Hall.

Subject to approval on the 31st October, the intention is to hold meetings monthly, at 2pm on the last Sunday of the month – obviously, that doesn’t include December! Location will be the Livesey Memorial Hall.

7 Nov '21

The next meeting of the BGNF will be on Saturday 27th November, 11am - 1pm at the Livesey. This will be our regular time and venue for meetings, which will be held on the last Saturday of every month.

In the New Year, meetings will recommence on 29th January 2022, followed by:

26th Feb
26th March
30th April
28th May
25th June
30th July
27 August

Please make lists of pedestrian issues you experience in the forum area, with particular focus on accessing the retail park, schools, and community services. In addition, Cllr Andre Bourne has just announced that Lewisham officers’ review of options for replacing/ reopening the Bridge will take a year to report. I have therefore invited him to join the meeting for a two-way discussion on the loss of local sports provision, both at the Bridge, and at the Livesey. I will keep members informed as to his response.

Please bring children to the meeting if you have difficulties with finding childcare. If they bring along paper and coloured pencils, they can draw us their ideas of what they’d like to see at Bell Green.

If you wish to actively participate in the meeting, and live in work in the forum area, please sign up for membership on arrival, if you haven’t already. Non members are welcome to audit forum meetings, but can’t speak (unless by invitation), or cast votes.

Looking forward to seeing you there,

Julia Webb,
Secretary of BGNF committee

26 Nov '21

Reminder that tomorrow, Saturday 27th November at the Livesey Memorial Hall
11am to 1pm, meeting of the BGNF.

Special guest Cllr Andre Bourne, Lewisham cabinet member for Culture, whose remit covers sport and leisure.

Guided tour of the Livesey’s sports grounds, currently trashed courtesy of Kier. Please be aware that the ground is rough and uneven, so please wear suitable footwear. Hope to see lots of Forum area residents there. Please note that people from outside the forum area, (and those who don’t want to sign up for the forum) can sit in on the meeting, but not vote or actively participate in questions.