Dear All,

Welcome to the Civic Society's email bulletin highlighting upcoming events and news.

We have several events coming up which we hope you will be able to attend:

Walk from Leytonstone to Leyton on Saturday 6th October

This walk will be led by David Boote and will follow a route visiting sites of interest together with looking at recent changes, developments and issues in the area including the Abraham Estate, Linear Park Project and the successfully saved Heathcote and Star pub. Meet 11am at Leytonstone tube station entrance (Grove Green Road side). The walk will take about one and a half to two hours and end in a café or pub.

Apple Day at Vestry House Museum on Sunday 14th October

The Civic Society will be having a stall at Apple Day from 11am-3pm so please let us know if you could help on the day or just come and visit the stall to say hello. Apple Day is an annual event celebrating everything to do with apples and other good things that autumn brings, with cakes, juices, plants and stalls in the lovely setting of Vestry House gardens in Walthamstow village.

Civic Society AGM on Thursday 25th October at Leytonstone Library

This year we will be holding our AGM at The Curve room, Leytonstone Library, Church Lane, E11 1HG from 7.30-9.30pm on Thursday 25th October. Mike Fox, the borough’s Conservation Officer, has agreed to be our speaker for the evening. We will also be reviewing our campaigns and activities and making plans for next year so please come along if you can.

Walthamstow Town Square Asset of Community Value Application

Thanks to all our members who signed our application to have the Town Square by the Mall registered as an Asset of Community Value. The application was submitted to the Council in July and they responded this week to inform us that the application had been unsuccessful as they claimed the re-landscaping and loss of 32% of the space was necessary to support the development of the Mall. Their decision is disappointing but no surprise and we will continue to press for the land and trees not to be lost.

Bakers Arms Conservation Area Appraisal

The Council has just started a consultation on an appraisal and management plan for the Bakers Arms Conservation Area which will run for 4 weeks from 28th September, with a drop in event on 9th October at the Hornbeam Centre between 4pm-7pm to answer questions from residents and businesses. The documents can be viewed on the Council's website: Please add your views as comments received will help to shape the final form of the management plan. 

Blooming Success in Walthamstow

Walthamstow Village in Bloom recently learnt that they had been successful in retaining their Gold standard at the London in Bloom Awards for 2018. Once again they were awarded Best London Village and scooped the Greener Streets award. In addition a garden in Church Lane won London's Best Front Garden. Well done and thanks to everyone involved. 

I am also including a link to Adrian Stannard’s blog Waltham Forest - our Community which includes latest news about developments and events in the borough:

Best wishes,

Jane Sterland

Chair, Waltham Forest Civic Society

Dear All,
Welcome to the Civic Society’s latest email bulletin to highlight upcoming events and news.
We have several events coming up in May and early June: 
Meeting with New Borough Conservation Officer on Monday 14th May
Next Monday 14th May we have arranged an informal meeting with the borough's new Conservation Officer, Mike Fox, and the Design & Conservation Manager, Ron Presswell. We will be meeting at 2.00pm in the café at the old Magistrates Court (now offices) at the corner of Forest Road and Farnan Avenue, E17 4NX. If you would like to come please email me so we have an idea of numbers.  
Highams Park Walk and Visit to Humphry’s Café on Saturday 2nd June
Ron Andrews will be leading a walk for the Civic Society along the River Ching and Highams Park Lake and will also visit the new community café which has recently been opened by the Highams Park Planning Group in what used to be a park equipment store. We will finish the walk at the Royal Oak pub for drinks and food. Paths may be muddy so stout footwear is recommended. Meet 11.00am on Chingford Lane (bus route 275 from Walthamstow and Woodford – the bus will display and announce the stop name Chingford Lane)Anyone coming by car is suggested to park in Waterhall Avenue off The Avenue and close to the bus stops. Ron’s mobile number if needed on the day is 07941 003911.
Summer Social Evening in the Birkbeck Tavern on Wednesday 6th June.
We will be holding a pub social evening from 7.00pm in the Birkbeck Tavern which is included in the borough’s Local List of historically significant buildings. It was built in 1881 and has an original tiled exterior and a lovely garden area – which we will be meeting in if the weather is fine. The pub is at 45 Langthorne Road, on the Leyton/Leytonstone border, E11 4HL.
The Walthamstow Mall Save Our Square Campaign Continues
Following the Mayor’s decision to agree the Mall redevelopment, subject to a small increase in affordable housing, the Save our Square campaign is continuing to fight the scheme using every available means, including looking into getting the avenue of lime trees designated as an Asset of Community Value and organising a lobby of the first meeting of the newly elected Council on Thursday, 24th May.
Unsafe Pavements and Unfinished Work on our High Streets
Civic Society member Ray Plassard is following up a range of issues with the Council that make our high streets unsafe for pedestrians including missing street signs and give way signs, incomplete street light replacement works, dangerous and confusing cycle paths on pavements and bus stops where passengers have to alight directly into the path of cyclists using the cycle lane – we await the Council’s response!
Waltham Forest Walks with David Boote
David Boote has planned a new programme of walks for the later spring and early summer, exploring the borough’s history, heritage and green spaces. More information can be found on his website:
I am also including a link to Adrian Stannard’s blog Waltham Forest - our Community which includes latest news about developments and events in the borough:
Best wishes,
Jane Sterland
Chair, Waltham Forest Civic Society

Hoe Street Ward Community Forum Meeting

posted 23 Jul 2014, 01:01 by Waltham Forest Civic Society   [ updated 23 Jul 2014, 01:09 ]

Community Ward Forum Meetings

Report of Hoe Street Ward Forum meeting

21st July 2014

About 30 residents attended and the first item was a leaflet about Healthwatch Waltham Forest who want to hear about residents views on various health and social issues

Health Watch Waltham Forest

The Chair of the Safer Neighbourhood Watch gave an upbeat report and urged residents to volunteer to join the board which provides the police with its priorities.

Landlord and Letting Agents Licencing was the next topic. Waltham Forest will be introducing a licencing scheme from next April applying 25 conditions on Landlords and non-compliance could lead to a £20k fine. The cost of the licence has not yet been set, but with 24k landlords in the Borough it is hoped residents will be better protected from rogue landlords.

CPZ – the ME zone around the Town Centre will be reviewed due to the changes in the area i.e. the Scene. A consultation in September will last 3 weeks. One possibility would be to split the ME zone as currently residents drive from one side to the other to park.

Mini Holland – Chris Harrison asked the audience if they had heard of this project and most had not. He went on to explain that it is intended to increase cycling in the Borough and to improve residential streets. The Mayor had pledged £30m over 3 years to Waltham Forest and the creation of segregated cycle lanes in Lea Bridge Road was a key target. A route along the line of Forest Road to Lea Bridge road was aimed at cutting down on rat running. The first area to be investigated was Pembroke Road/Hoe Street and the railway. He wanted to speak to residents groups rather than individuals and wants views within 6 weeks. Despite great interest from the audience no further discussion was allowed.

Mini Holland - council info

Milton Road Residents Association gave a very upbeat report pointing out that since their inception about 5 other groups have formed in the adjacent area. They communicate via all means and bring residents together to help each other and to provide fun events and a structure for looking out for fellow residents.

Community Asset Meeting

posted 16 Jul 2014, 23:13 by Waltham Forest Civic Society

Civic Society Public Meeting about Assets of Community Value: How local people can protect the pubs, buildings and open spaces we value


Thursday 24th July, meeting at 7.15pm for 7.30pm start at the Hare and Hounds pub, 278 Lea Bridge Road Leyton E10 7LD.  


The Civic Society are holding a Public Meeting next Thursday evening, the 24th July, at the Hare and Hounds public House in Lea Bridge Road, Leyton E10 (opposite Emmanuel Parish Church) with the aim of explaining how we can use new community powers to register threatened buildings and open spaces as Assets of Community Value. This gives communities an increased chance to save much loved pubs, buildings and other local facilities.


So far no buildings or open spaces in Waltham Forest are registered as Assets of Community Value and with your help we aim to change this.


We have invited a representative of the borough to attend, and we have also invited two campaigners from the Campaign for Real Ale, which is concerned at the increasing numbers of pub closures and redevelopments. Another speaker will be James of the "Save the Chesham" campaign in Homerton, in our neighbouring borough of Hackney, which was the first building to be listed as an ACV in that borough.


The main purposes of the meeting are 1) to explain the ACV community powers and how they can be applied at the local level; and 2) to begin to set up a list of buildings accessible to the public that Waltham Forest residents feel should be kept in community use (be that a public house or any other building or space that can be used by the community); and 3) agree an initial shortlist of buildings we would like to register as ACVs.

Only community groups can apply for a building to be listed as an Asset of Community Value; individuals cannot do so. At least 21 members of the organisation applying for ACV listing must sign to support the registration, and they must be on the Electoral Roll in the Borough (or be a registered voter in an adjacent borough, such as Redbridge, Haringey, Newham or Hackney).


We are therefore holding this Public Meeting and inviting as many interested people as possible to attend, including representatives of other groups, in the hope that we can raise support to help us achieve our main aim of getting at least three buildings applied for as a direct result of the meeting.


Public transport: Buses 48, 55, 56 stop outside.


We hope you can come. 



Waltham Forest Civic Society


Contact number for further information: 07900 498440

Lincolns site - Leytonstone

posted 9 Dec 2013, 09:24 by Waltham Forest Civic Society

The Planning Committee by 4 votes to 3 with one abstension and the the Chair's casting vote gave planning permission for a 5 storey block of flats to replace the iconic Lincolns Pub in Leytonstone High Road. For details of the scheme follow these links:

South Grove site

posted 9 Dec 2013, 09:14 by Waltham Forest Civic Society   [ updated 9 Dec 2013, 09:28 ]

Morrisons received planning permission by 4 votes to 2 for a supermarket with flats above at the Planning Meeting on the 3rd December 2013. The officers report appeared to leave out as lot of important information such as an Environment Assessment and one of the Labour Councillors did not arrive in time to take part.

To see details of the scheme follow these links:

Morrisons come to Walthamstow

posted 30 Aug 2013, 01:14 by Waltham Forest Civic Society   [ updated 30 Aug 2013, 01:17 ]

Morrisons have submitted their planning application for the South Grove car park site in Walthamstow. They have been consulting the public on their plans for the last couple of years.

Planning Committee 4th June 2013

posted 5 Jun 2013, 23:28 by Waltham Forest Civic Society

This Planning Committee (4th June 2013) was more interesting than most. There was an unexpected win which created some complex debate on Planning law.

First off was 98 Vallentin Road (2013/0039) an outrageous proposal for a 5 storey block of 9 flats beside the railway embankment at the end of Vallentin Road, E17 3JH. This replaced an earlier application in 2007 for 4 flats. The Chair kicked off giving his view (long gone are the days when the chair was neutral and anyway this was his constituency!). He seemed more impressed by the £44k Section 106 contribution than the look of the building. No local residents had complained and he regarded it as an “iconic development” using good quality materials. The Tories took the view that the under sized amenity space would not be used anyway so it did not matter. The planning policy was all wrong if it allowed this development. The local residents had voted not to have a CPZ so there would be nothing to stop residents parking in the street. Labour made no comment – why should they when their chair had said it all, and when the vote was taken there were 5 in favour Labour and Liberal and 2 abstentions Tory. So a totally unsuitable block of flats will now blight this part of Vallentin Road.


Leytonstone Police Station (2011/1229) change of use to an extension of the Azhar Academy for girls in Forest Gate. It has taken over 2 years to get to the committee. This was clearly an over development of the site leading to a lack of playground space for the girls. The officer’s report recommended approval and indicated there were very few grounds to oppose it. Having made our case using information from the various Ofsted reports I assumed it would be nodded through. In fact all the councillors were opposed for a variety of reasons. Labour kicked off objecting to the lack of parking and that the building was not suitable for converting to a school as it was too cramped. There was no access to the upper floors for the disabled.

The Liberal was unsure but had been given a tour 6 months before and was surprised to find the application was different to what she had been shown. Work has been going on converting the buildings since 2011. There was no need for the nursery as Acacia nursery already has spare places. The staircase to get to the upper floor overlooks the gardens of the surrounding houses.

Tories commented on the officer’s report concerning the Human Rights Act and pointed out it also covered Health and Morals. A school with no space for recreation can hardly be a healthy place. They felt the building could be adapted but this “can’t be a school in this form”. An application should contribute to the area but this proposal did not.

The chair asked questions about the catering and it appeared food would be brought in and a small kitchen would be used to server the food. Further concerns were expressed about disability access. It was also pointed out that local children had been allocated spaces in existing schools so there was no need for extra places.

All the councillors were against the proposal but the Head of Development Management pointed out it was not that easy to legally oppose it. Everyone agreed in principle the redundant Police Station could become a school and anyway from a change of use point of view it would still be a community use building as it was when it was a Police Station. The demand on educational places was not a material consideration. The Government laid down no rules about playground space and the Borough did not have a policy on play space in schools therefore this was not a material consideration. Disabled access was a material consideration although as a locally listed building it would not be possible to install a lift without damaging the historic parts of the building. Traffic and parking were material considerations, but the proposed traffic plan had been accepted by the Highways department. This left 3 options (a) approve the plans (b) Refuse on Material Considerations grounds i.e. access and traffic (c) Defer for further negotiations.

The Councillors were not prepared to support the scheme and felt too many changes would be needed to make it acceptable so (a) and (c) were rejected. It was pointed out that the Equality Act was a material consideration so in the end they voted 6 against and 1 abstention to Refuse the application.

Planning Committee June 4th at 7.30pm

posted 27 May 2013, 02:09 by Waltham Forest Civic Society

2013/0039 - 98 Vallentin Road E17 3JH  - a totally inappropriate 5 storey block of flats is being proposed beside the railway line. The site is far too small and being a wedge shape totally unsuitable for this development. Come and support our opposition to this plan.

2011/1229 - Leytonstone Police Station to be converted to a Free school. There is just not enoughj space in this building for the size of school being proposed. Come and help us oppose this inappropriate development.

Morrisons comes to Walthamstow

posted 8 Jan 2013, 23:20 by Waltham Forest Civic Society

Morrison supermarket is planning to build flats and a new store on the South Grove car park. 
An exhibition of the plans is being held on Friday 18th January from 2pm to 8pm and again on Saturday 19th January from 10am to 4pm at the Alpha Business Centre.

Planning Committee

posted 8 Jan 2013, 23:15 by Waltham Forest Civic Society   [ updated 8 Jan 2013, 23:15 ]

At last night's Planning Committee meeting the following were agreed unanimously:

Arcade Site - a development of flats, shops and a 9 screen cinema

The Ridgeway - the former Planning Offices and Chingford Town Hall site will have a range of houses and flats built on it.

Cinema and old Town Hall to become flats

posted 3 Jan 2013, 08:27 by Waltham Forest Civic Society

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