Does anyone have any more info on the White Cube Gallery moving in? Can't believe it hasn't generated any real interest on this forum...as, blimey, the opposition to the development planned here certainly did! So presumably most should be really pleased with this outcome. Personally I think it'll be great, especially if they open up the yard into a piazza in front.
I, for one, am delighted by this move. I overlook the site and the work they are currently doing on the roof is a lot less intrusive than the earlier, proposed development.
The article above gives some information. I believe, from the correspondence I have had with them, that the work is due to be completed in a couple of months - although full planning permission has still not been given.
Whilst supporting the arrival of White Cube in Bermondsey Street the residents of Royal Oak Yard would draw to your attention to the impact that this is bringing with it.
White Cube are awaiting planning approval and there is a planning committee hearing on 12 April. Yet - as anyone passing will see, the demolition has taken place, the roof has been replaced and the interior work is well underway. Today the foundations for a large workshop extension were being marked out no doubt ready to dig well before Tuesday without any proper notices being served.
It will all look very good from Bermondsey Street yet White Cube have decided - after their presentation to the public in December - to do some other things. These include placing the largest 'compactor' possible in Royal Oak Yard, building a paint spray facility to the side into the yard and using the access to the yard for deliveries. In fact all the back end facilities that are rather unsightly, noisy and inconvenient.
Despite requests to consider repositioning these within the vast area available they have declined to consider the alternatives.
The excuses for their considerations are interesting:
They could not place the compactor in the larger space in lambs Walk as it would spoil their elevation.
They do not want deliveries off Bermondsey Street as it will mean their staff walking too far.
It has left the residents, both offices and residential, about 50 strong concerned as to the disproportionate impact to the yard which has become a small local community.
The arrival of 8m delivery trucks with 5m long timbers into the yard presents a traffic hazard. There is only a narrow path for pedestrians at present opening off Bermondsey Street and there are children and mothers with prams who need to use this entrance.
Despite requests for documents on 3rd March, these are still outstanding just 4 days from the hearing.
A request to Southwark for a postponement whilst reports from experts can be obtained has been ignored.
Reports showing traffic access were received today leaving no possibility for the residents to consult.
At a meeting with White Cube and their consultants DP9 a postponement was requested and was flatly refused.
There are substantial issues to this matter concerning rights of access which White Cube claim but have seen fit not to provide any evidence.
It is clearly a matter requiring more than arrogant posturing and has seen both the managing agent of the property, F W Gapp and the freeholder collaborating with us to highlight the unsuitability and disproportional impact of White Cubes actions.
All are now concerned as to how this application appears to have been taken for granted by White Cube who have carried out large a large proportion of the work before planning approval has been granted.
This is not a case of Not In My Back Yard - but it is a case of sustaining a community for longer than the 13 years that white Cube are offering the area.
This is worrying indeed! As for the roof, the work is far from being completed, with the resulting noise and dustdue to continue until the end of April and maybe beyond.
What can be done about this 'comactor'? Are we to be subjected to regular, ongoing noise? My flat, in Hestia House, overlooks the building - so there is in excess of the '50 strong' who will be affected.
Some of the newer residents in the Bermondsey area forget this is not leafy Surrey and there were far more lorries, deliveries,dust and dirt when the Recall factory and those in Royal Oak Yard were operating as workplaces just a few years ago. The White Cube will provide some jobs and much cultural interest for all the local community and compared to what else might have been considered for the site should prove relatively benign as a neighbour.
@Jerry - I am not a new resident and our organisation has been in Bermondsey Street since 2000. Whether this is city living or leafy suburbia is not relevant to a disproportionate impact on a community - both are valid.
The Recall factory actually had no impact on Royal Oak Yard as Recall had no access to the yard. So on the contrary - this will increase the traffic so there will be far more lorries than previous.
As for the provision of jobs, within Royal Oak Yard, there are some 15 businesses and a block of live/work units - well in excess of 100 people work in this space making it a vibrant and exciting community - that has a shelf life of more than 15 years.
There is also a distinct difference in change of use from Recall which was a logistics depot to providing a sprayshop. I dare say that 100 years ago this place was filthy, noisy, etc. But that is not the case now and the developments where people now live and work were designated Residential and Live/Work by Southwark just a few years ago.
Suggesting that 'what is on offer' is better than 'what could happen' is of course the normal developer argument to create smoke and mirrors with those having genuine concerns and grievance and divide opinion.
Nobody is arguing against White Cube - what is being argued is why Royal Oak Yard should be its dumping ground when there is a vast amount of space available within their demise to site such functions. As stated - their defense is that this would inconvenience them. Hardly neighbourly.
We are talking about White Cube accommodating one compactor and a space to accept deliveries within the 42,000 sq ft they have available. Just take a walk to the yard and see how narrow the entrance, road and parking areas are and you will see the impact this will have.
There appears to be no question as to this going ahead but one does have to question the manner in which things have been done and the information provided to residents and of course the process itself.
@Philpotts24 - if you want to know more about this we have been doing a lot of research and have met with WC - email [email protected] - residents at hestia may also be interested. The planning hearing is at 7pm on Tuesday this week.