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Berkeley Homes @ Potters Fields & ex-St Olave's Grammar School

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Thursday 27 September 2007 1.08pm
observer wrote:
Councillors are deliberately being kept in the dark by Officers and the law of Council procedures not being followed whilst she has independently decided (with Councillor Stanton) to sell off the jewel in our crown, Southwark's land at Potter's Fields, and negotiate with Berkeley Homes a sale price for its residential development.

If councillors are being kept in the dark how do you know what's going on? It's not exactly a secret that the Council is in negotiation with BH over the site. Maybe we should reserve judgement until we see what they come up with rather than criticise them just for trying to do something (the alternative to doing something is to roll over and allow BH's towers to be built remember).

What would you like Southwark Council to do? How do you propose they achieve it given where we are now?

I really dont think that previous goings-on in Walsall have anything whatsoever to do with this issue.
Thursday 27 September 2007 1.27pm
observer wrote:
The following article on Annie Shepperd is from the Local Government Website.

This having been raised, can I add a bit of context.

I think the article which observer is referring to is on a site call Local Government Plus. LGC is an EMAP industry news publication written by journalists - it's important to stress that the article above isn't an official government position - (assuming that is the doc that observer is referring to).

If anyone wants to understand more on this issue, I would suggest looking at the National Audit Commission report which is an offical document.

On my reading, officers certainly did raise issues with their ability to give advice to Ms Shepperd, in the course of them explaining to the audit commission why they had not caused the Council to follow proper procedures in all cases.

However, Ms Shepperd denied this suggestion and gave certain examples to the audit commission of where she had taken robust advice when it had been given to her. The audit commission noted the conflicting evidence, but was unable to reach a view on who was right and who was wrong. That fact is not recorded in the LGC/Emap article.

Have no connection or interest, but conscious Ms Shepperd would be entitled to raise an issue with the Emap article being suggested as fact on this site.
Thursday 27 September 2007 1.37pm
The story did make it into today's Standard. Probably informed by James' article (I'm sure others also forwarded it to the Standard journalists). Obviously it's not as comprehensive as James' coverage but it's good to get it out to wide circulation.

http://tinyurl.com/2kpacs
Thursday 27 September 2007 3.48pm
I think Ken has done everyone who opposes this scheme a huge favour: he has brought the scheme to wider public attention.

We need to capitalise on that publicity IMMEDIATELY.

This is something I suggested a few years ago.

We need to get in touch with Stanton et al and convince them to do something very simple - namely, invite as many members of the local, city, national, inetrnational and architectual press to Potters Fields one afternoon. Once there Southwark should raise a gas filled balloon to the actual height of the tallest tower. They should then simply say "This is how high the Berkeley Homes development is going to be. Is this what we want next to Tower Bridge and across from the Tower of London?"

The press should then be encouraged to take photos from appropriate vantage points eg from the bridge and from the Tower. That will give the public a real idea of what this development means and if that cannot mobilise a larger public outcry then I doubt anything will.

If cost is an issue I am happy to share the cost with others who are opposed.
Thursday 27 September 2007 7.58pm
The Quill has a good creative idea.

I fear he is right that we have one more chance to highlight this issue.


Count me in for action. I will happily take an afternoon off.
Thursday 27 September 2007 8.44pm
The Quill wrote:
I think Ken has done everyone who opposes this scheme a huge favour: he has brought the scheme to wider public attention.
We need to capitalise on that publicity IMMEDIATELY.

This is something I suggested a few years ago.

We need to get in touch with Stanton et al and convince them to do something very simple - namely, invite as many members of the local, city, national, inetrnational and architectual press to Potters Fields one afternoon. Once there Southwark should raise a gas filled balloon to the actual height of the tallest tower. They should then simply say "This is how high the Berkeley Homes development is going to be. Is this what we want next to Tower Bridge and across from the Tower of London?"

The press should then be encouraged to take photos from appropriate vantage points eg from the bridge and from the Tower. That will give the public a real idea of what this development means and if that cannot mobilise a larger public outcry then I doubt anything will.

If cost is an issue I am happy to share the cost with others who are opposed.


That's a fantastic idea I would come to.
Thursday 27 September 2007 9.01pm
I'm afraid I am not in London for the forseeable future. Is there someone who will take it upon themselves to present this idea to the Council?

I think there is just the right mood out there. There have been several approvals of towers in the City and SE1 (approvals which I heartily endorse by the way) but this just might be the project where the wider public says enough is enough. And I think a visual demonstration of what exactly could be there for the next 50 years (and a demonstration of just how deceptive Berkeley's drawings illustrations are) might help to turn the tide.

But someone has to convince the Council to do this to counter Ken's ultimatum. I'm afraid at the moment it cannot be me.
Friday 28 September 2007 6.38am
Dammit nor me, I'm miles away, BUT, PLEASE EVERYONE, RISE UP AND BE COUNTED!
Friday 28 September 2007 6.47am
Furthermore I have not met and have no personal animosity to Shepherd and MacDonald, but I have heard quite enough from those who have had close dealings with them to understand that they have a "put up or shut up" attitude. The worst of it is that they have been parachuted in to Southwark, largely to save the backside of the Lib Dems from the catastrophe called Nick Stanton. That this is likely to have the opposite effect in the next local election wont save the situation in Potters Fields right now. They are also running roughshod over the Elephant Regeneration team, playing the "new broom" card and in effect whizzing in with absolutely no prior knowledge of what is a hugely complex project, and getting rid of all who have worked their butts off for the last five years...and that spells disaster. We did not elect either of these people. Do we have to accept their dictat?
Friday 28 September 2007 11.38am
Every one could e mail Southwark Council asking if they would
take part in this demonstration,that way every one isn't
relying on one person.
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