This evening Bermondsey Square has been closed off for a private event. This means that the entrances and exits have been sealed off and manned by security guards. There appears to some 'do' going on in the square and there are vintage cars parked there etc. etc. It is not even possible to use it as a pedestrian cut through tonight!
I think this is a really bad development. This square ought to be a resource for the local community, not cut off from it. That is certainly how the private sector developers sold it to us in the first place! It would be awful if this set a precedent and that it became routinely sealed off in this way.
There were loads of locals there tonight. It would be impossible to run the event with everyone walking through& isn't really too much hardship to walk around - everyone did it during the building. Fine, if this becomes a regular thing then complain, but it is just 1 night!
I'm with the whingers on this, private companies should not be allowed to take over public spaces. If it were the road they'd have to get permission to close it, pedestrian areas should be the same.
It might be just one night, but how many times will it keep happening, if a company can do it once and make money, why should they not just keep doing it, it's not like Southwark will stop them, unless people make a fuss.
I was annoyed this evening when I could not walk across Bermondsey Square on my usual route home, due to the private event. I understand the need to celebrate on the opening weekend but I would hope that this would not restrict members of the public like myself from going though the square. I would have hoped that the square would be more inclusive as I thought they were trying to target the community, not just VIPs.
By all means fence of the retail fronts, and if they, whover they are, really feel that you need to exclude the community at large, then at least they should have the courtesy to make their intentions known and arrange for a proper road closure, not simply throw up a fence and employ security to enforce their exclusion zone.
A very poor start to this development, I did hope for a fully public and inclusive space, I fear we have another Jam Factory, a very poor start.