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Alcohol and entertainment license for Potters Fields Park

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Thursday 19 April 2007 11.37pm
Jonathan K wrote:
I haven't seen any indication of pop-concerts in marquees for 1000s to be held there. But maybe I'm mistaken, if so, I apologise.
Why are you so sure that what will happen in Potters Fields will be so terrible and not as sociable and civilsied as happens elsewhere in the vicinity?

dear jonathan
please read the aplication - it includes boxing matches!
btw the prince of prussia is now called something else lounge and is thankfully much quieter than when it was a dromedary.
you ar mistaken, we have suffered from many events in the park - not only the noise during but the antisocial behaviour as they leave in mobs vis tooley street entrance - how long do you think our new garden yet to be but soon plantings would survive one leaving from a concert?
i don't want our park to look like romford high street every sunday morning after an event.
in short, we've een there and we've seen that and no thank you.
the worst event was after an amex tennis concert with some coloured bint singing ...
Thursday 19 April 2007 11.54pm
I'm pretty un-PC, but you can shove the "coloured bint" bilge where the sun don't shine. You've undermined the reasonable case against the license application.
Friday 20 April 2007 7.24am
This discussion thread seems to hav deteriorated into all out war, but there really is no excuse for the "coloured bint" comment. it would be very easy to read between the lines of your comment that the real problem you have with the application is that it might encourage people of different ethnic origin into the area. I trust that isn't what you meant.

As said at the very beginning of this thread you really can't place too much emphasis on the scope of the license. Under the new licensing laws there are a range of licenses and they are worded in a particular form. The fact that it includes wrestling and boxing doesn't mean they are actually going to stage it, just as many Ricky Hatton bouts or WWF Slamdown events actually taking place in the the many pubs in the area that also have such licenses.

At the end of the day Potters Fields was previously an unfocussed area with a poor scrap of grass, I think we have to have faith in the fact that it now has a Trust established to protect the interests of the park. Clearly they will be concerned to establish an appropriate Balance and should there be problems then there is a proper point for local residents to focus their ire.

Whilst I'm not going to join the people saying "if you don't like central London, don't live here" as I think its a lot more complicated for many people than that - including the fact that a great deal of family history may be connected with the area - but I do think we all have to accept to a degree that it's not going to be as serene as a Dorset village, and surely London's vibrancy and that of SE1 is one of the reasons that keeps many of us here or draws us here in the first place.
Friday 20 April 2007 7.29am
Late night entertainment is surely not as black and white as people are making out.

A bit like if your neightbour holds a late night party. You probably wont mind, or at least grin and bear it, if it is a reasonably rare event. In fact you might be invited and enjoy it. But every weekend in summer, or every night for a week or so, and you would complain. More than that and you would be calling the Council noise officer, asking for this sound equipment to be confiscated and so on.

Balance . A late night licence per se is not bad, but safe-guards need to be built in to protect neighbours. It might start out fine, but if money is being made there will be pressure to increase frequency. Or difference management might take over.

It is now very difficult for a license to be withdrawn, or terms reduced. So much better to explain concerns up front by "objecting" and asking for conditions in terms of hours, frequency and limits on noise levels. (I dont know what conditions can be made - but the licensing officer should be able to help.) If there is not a problem, and the operator is making money, they can always apply for an extension. If there are conditions and these are not being kept to, then there is a much more legitimate ground for complaint.
Friday 20 April 2007 8.54am
Meeting Monday 23/4, 10am, Chaplin Centre, Thurlow St, SE17 2DG. This is an informal conciliation meeting of the interested parties where objections, concerns, license limitations will be discussed and perhaps agreed ahead of the formal meeting. Call Kay Riley of Southwark 0207 525 5687. Could be constructive.
Friday 20 April 2007 10.28am
Thanks Mark for the meeting info, I might try to go along!

To address some of the points made (I don't think this is 'all out war', there's actually a lot of common ground, given that we all live in the area and want SE1 to be a success):

I live just off Great Dover St at the moment, but am buying a flat on Southwark Bridge Road, nr the FT building. I work in City Hall so spend most of my days in the area.

While not se1 born-and-bred, as some of you claim to be, I do have family ties here as my Great Great Uncle Jim was master brewer at the Courage Brewery next to Tower Bridge for many years...

Do these credentials allow me to speak on the subject?? :)

About the licence - as Gareth has already said, Potters Field has been transformed, as has the whole riverbank from Bermondsey to Waterloo bridge. This has got to be a good thing for all local residents, surely you don't actually want to go back to living in a crime-ridden swamp??

Part of this success (and the guaranteed house price growth!) is that the area can sell itself as 'young, vibrant and multicultural'. I love this about south London. Why would we not want an entertainment licence for Potters Field if it means we can hold parties and celebrations there? Events which will benefit the area and show SE1 in a very positive light.

And I totally disagree with those who say that events at the scoop are ok cos it's far from peoples' houses but PFP is too near... What houses, exactly, look directly onto the park? Unless you're planning to buy into the new Berkeley Homes towers than I think you are completely exaggerating the potential disruption to your homes!

Friday 20 April 2007 12.27pm
Kathryn, it's just a fact that Potters Field, is right by Shad Thames, but the Scoop is far from dwellings, surrounded by offices, a hotel and a river and has natural sound proofing by it's shape. How many seconds does it take you to walk from PF to Shad Thames? 10? 20? Sorry you disagree with the geography, but it's so. The area is plenty "young and vibrant" already. You won't have to live with the consequences of a permissive license. House prices can look after themselves. I might see you at the meeting. I think there is a reasonable outcome providing frequency, hours, decibels, policing, rubbish collection and service access are properly defined in the license and the upshot could be an improvement for the whole area.
Friday 20 April 2007 1.18pm
Yeah I'm sure a compromise can be worked out relatively painfully. Do you live in Shad Thames? Aren't you effected by teh All Bar One braying hordes of suits, the Pont de la Tour clattering of wine glasses etc etc? Seems like you won't hear a thing from PF over all that noise!

Also, the only thing standing between the scoop and PF is City Hall itself and that's hardly a sound barrier!

Saturday 21 April 2007 5.51am
there are over 130 parks and other open spaces in southwark.
lets have a lottery so that every 130th event happens in each park in turn and not all at potters field!
bemondsey has never in it's history been a crime ridden swamp either - perhaps you mean hampstead?
Sunday 22 April 2007 11.58am
It's a pity the meeting is during working hours.I'm afraid I can't attend then. I'd be grateful if some one who does attend could mention that there are other people who are interested but who can't come at that time on a week day. Having received the Potters Field Management Trust Events Policy,I think there are many concerns that need to be raised and clarification given and solutions found.

The main points I hope will be made are that :_
-it is not a sufficient safeguard for local residents for the Potters Park Trust to simply give an assurance that although the license permits certain activity they aren't planning to hold particular types of events or run events late at night , on week nights etc. There need to be stipulated limitations itemised within the license to ensure reasonable living conditions for residents in the immediate area and also free access for the public. If the Trust want to make additional arrangements for special occasions in the future they will be able to seek special permission for these plans and these can then be considered on their merits.
-In the Potters Field Park Management Trust Events Policy ,the trust does state that the principle aim is to increase enjoyment through all forms of access for all, rather than maximising the commercial potential of the park, which would be far more reassuring and laudable, had they not also stated that they consider the profile and potential of the park as equal to that of Trafalgar Square!
-I am unclear as to the level of accountability provided by the Potters Park Trust to the local residents,particularly the people who live in the immediate vicinity. The document talks about the interest and enjoyment of the 'local community' but this is not defined and so clarity within the process and conditions to safeguard the quality of life for local residents if indeed the trust considers that the 'local community' includes ' all Londoners'.
-In the Potters Field Park Management Trust Events Policy , it doesn't tell us how many directors are to be drawn from the GLA,the London Bridge BID, More London Developments,Southwark Council and the community associations to be represented. It also doesn't say how this representation will be achieved and how consultation and information exchange will occur.This Balance will affect the focus of the trust.
-One of the objectives in the Events policy is about maximising income whilst causing as little disruption to the local community as possible.However,unless there is an identified way stated as to how and when this will be monitored then these words are meaningless.
-The wording of the objective relating to 'free public access' gives me reason for concern as there are no clear grounds detailed that might cause the park to be closed to the public. There is an issue here as the objective in the Events policy only states that 'where possible' the trust will ensure that the major routes through the park are kept open.
-a service level agreement with Southwark Council is mentioned in the Events policy.The trust states it will endeavour to uphold the principle and objectives of the Southwark borough Events policy.I think it would be helpful if the forum were told how Southwark will monitor this service level agreement and adherence to their Events policy and whether they have any sanctions should the Trust fail to meet with stated objectives.

I am very sorry I can't attend the meeting-it would be great if some one could feedback the main points of the discussion to this forum.
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