The best news we've had for ages.... 17/01/2013 11:11:00......Posted by Tim Pollard
This morning the Mayor of London came to the Fairfield Halls to announce that Westfield and Hammersons have formed a joint venture to redevelop Centrale and the Whitgift Centre. This turns them, at a stroke, from rivals to allies; both had been previously developing separate plans to redevelop the town centre, each backed by different groups of stakeholders.
Under the terms of the agreement, Westfield has acquired a 50% interest in Centrale from Hammerson and the joint venture will purchase a 25% interest in the Whitgift Centre, following completion of a conditional acquisition agreement between Hammerson and Royal London Asset Management. Westfield will undertake the design and construction of the project; Hammerson will continue to manage Centrale and manage any further acquisitions prior to the development of the Whitgift Centre. A Westfield executive will lead the project development team and it is intended that a Hammerson executive will lead the asset management of the completed centre.
It is difficult to overstate just how good this news is for our town. As a retail centre, Croydon has been in relative decline for some time - we used to be one of the top 10 destinations in the country; now we're just in the top 25. Of course, most high streets have struggled in recent years as more people shop online - witness the recent announcements re Jessops and HMV - but we've struggled more than most because of poor management of the Whitgift Centre, the town's worsening image and the disastrous decision of the previous Labour Council to sell off our car parks to NCP.
Followers of local stories will know that whilst we were delighted that two companies with such prestigious reputations were interested in investing in Croydon, we were very concerned that while they battled for the right to redevelop our retail centre, it might decline very quickly following the closure of Allders. Both the Mayor of London and the Conservative administration at the Town Hall deserve huge credit for the work they have done behind the scenes that has helped bring the two companies together.
Today's announcement really is a game changer for the town. We have two of the top retail developers in the country proposing to invest about £1 billion in our retail centre with the explicit aim of bringing brands like John Lewis to Croydon and making it one of five retail destinations in the capital (the others being Brent Cross in north London, Westfield London in west London, Westfield Stratford City in east London and the West End in central London). Not only will this create thousands of jobs but it is likely to encourage owners of other key sites around the town centre to get on with their schemes and it's going to help to transform Croydon's reputation.
Although their schemes were broadly similiar, they naturally had their individual merits. Now we will get the best of both worlds - the two centres being run as one rather than competing with each other.
They intend to get planning permission this year, to start on site in 2015 and to complete the scheme in 2018. We'd all like to see a quicker timetable but this is a big scheme and these things take time. What's important is that existing retailers in the town - and those we want to come here - have certainty it is going to happen.
One of the main things that puts people off shopping in Croydon at the moment is the parking prices. That's something both Westfield and Hammersons are very much aware of and determined to address.
Finally a word to the sceptics. When this first surfaced, several people responded "We've heard it all before. The Council has published numerous plans for the future of Croydon and nothing ever happens. Why should this be any different?" We can understand their scepticism. But there is a big difference. In the past, particularly when Labour were running the town, we've had grandiose plans that didn't have buy in from those who owned the sites in question. Today, we have two of the top retail developers in the country saying "We're coming". They have the financial muscle to do this and they have the support of the freeholder and the primary leaseholder. Remember 17th January 2013. I think it'll turn out to be the day Croydon's fortunes turned around.
Hear Me Speak - Sanderstead Residents' Association 20/06/2018 21:56:00.......Posted by Yvette Hopley
I was pleased to attend the Hear Me Speak 2018 primary school competition which was organised by the SRA at St. Peters' Primary School. Four schools competed, Greenvale, Gresham, Hamsey Green and St Peters for the coveted trophy. Each school provided a three member team presenting on interesting topics such as gender neutrality, the impact of video gaming, shortening of school holidays and dieting and body image. It was an extremely close contest with all participants performing well but it was Greenvale Primary School that won first prize. It was an honour to present the certificates and prizes as a past Mayor of Croydon. Well done to the brilliant children and everyone involved and a thank you to the Sanderstead Residents' Association for organising the event.
In a previous blog I highlighted some of the problems on Purley Downs Road since the introduction of the 20mph zone. A number of drivers are speeding and overtaking law-abiding citizens attempting to drive at the now required 20mph. I took this up with the council and the cabinet member and a number of 20mph markings have been painted on the road to assist. I hope that drivers adhere to the limit and it helps address the issue of any possible collisions or accidents.
Sanderstead Safer Neighbourhood Team - Change of Email 19/06/2018 21:27:00.......Posted by Yvette Hopley
Your Safer Neighbourhoods Team (SNT) is a group of Met police officers dedicated to serving our community. The team is made up of officers based in the area supported by additional officers from the wider area. They work closely with local authorities, community leaders and residents to decide the policing priorities for the area. This helps them find useful, long-term solutions to local problems, while maintaining our wider focus on reducing crime across London.
As of today Sanderstead LPT has a new email address:
Please use this to contact the team. The old email address is no longer in operation and will bounce back if you try to use.
Do pass on this information to your contacts.
PCSO Sam Brooks 7381 ZD
Sanderstead SNT| Addington Police station | Addington Village Road | Croydon | CR0 5AQ
Telephone: 0208 721 2470 Email: ZD-SNTSanderstead@met.police.uk Follow us on Twitter @MPSSanderstead Follow us on FaceBook www.facebook.com/MPSSanderstead
Grass Cutting and Green Space Management 18/06/2018 11:03:00.......Posted by Yvette Hopley
In general I would say that the new contractor has made a good job of the verges and green spaces that have been cut. It is a difficult task to maintain the banks of Sanderstead Hill and a good attempt has been made in ensuring that the bank has not been cut too short or "scraped" as it was before. However, there have been issues with the maintenance of Sanderstead roundabout, in particular the shrubs and beds have not had any attention this season. Many hedges are out of control and dead plants and weeds seem to be the star attraction rather than the beautiful plants that should be in full bloom. There are also problems on our border with Tandridge. This is also tricky and gets missed as one side of the pavement and verges is in our area and the other side in Surrey. A poor attempt has been made to cut the grass at the junction of Wentworth Way and Tithe Pit Shaw Lane but clumps of long grass have been left around the posts. I have asked the council to instruct the contractor to return with his strimmer to tidy up the grass area at our boundary and to ensure that the beds on the roundabout are maintained.
Sanderstead Pond - Rat Infestation 18/06/2018 10:39:00.......Posted by Yvette Hopley
A number of residents have alerted me to the problem of rats running along the pathways around Sanderstead pond. The water and foliage and tasty morsals from ducks that are being fed is a natural habitat and ideal breeding place. However, there are just too many now around the pond scaring the residents and small children. Some rat boxes are to be installed to help with this infestation.
Kings Wood - Friends Signs 16/06/2018 20:00:00.......Posted by Yvette Hopley
Finally the signs marking the entrance to Kings Wood at four locations have been installed. These were requested by The Friends of King's Wood to encourage people to visit the beautiful ancient woodland. This beauty spot can be accessed from a number of locations along the Limpsfield Road and finger post signs will also be put up on five lampposts highlighting the access points. The signs were funded by the local councillors and the Sanderstead Residents' Association.
Eid - Sanderstead Recreation Ground 15/06/2018 12:17:00.......Posted by Yvette Hopley
Muslims around the world gathered to celebrate Eid al-Fitr, the three-day festival marking the end of Ramadan.
The Eid-al-Fitr is one of only two major festivals in the Islamic faith and sees Muslims hold mass prayers and give money to the poor and needy.
Translated from Arabic it means 'the feast of the breaking of the fast'. The festival signals an end to the holy month of Ramadan, when Muslims fast from sunrise to sunset.
The festival began at moonrise last night and can continue for up to three days, during which Muslims greet each other by saying Eid Mubarak.
'Eid' means 'celebration' and 'mubarak' means 'blessed', so the saying can be translated as 'have a blessed holiday. We were pleased to have our own gathering of prayers in Sanderstead Recreation Ground. Cllr Tim Pollard and I were able to meet members of the muslim community alongside our Sanderstead Safer Neighbourhood Team.
Sanderstead Care Centre - Previously Wells Place 14/06/2018 07:38:00.......Posted by Yvette Hopley
Residents may have noticed a number of changes to the care home formerly known as Wells Place. The Prime Care Group has acquired the care home.
Prime Care own and operate two other nursing homes in Croydon and also operate another outside of Croydon. They acquired Sanderstead Care Centre from the Victoria Nursing Group who withdrew from the London market completely earlier this year. Prime Care are making changes to the environment and as such have started significant building work. This led to them self-imposing an embargo to ensure that they had space in which to make the relevant improvements. The home is not a purpose built care home and the building is undergoing some modernisation for a contemporary care environment to be achieved.
Addington Road - Proposed Crossing 12/06/2018 11:08:00.......Posted by Yvette Hopley
Following safety concerns from residents a new informal crossing is proposed for the Addington Road. It should help many people navigate the road safely. The scheme should be implemented within the next year or so.
Footpath 145 Between Heathhurst Road and Mayfield Road 12/06/2018 10:06:00.......Posted by Yvette Hopley
I have reported to the council the overgrown foliage from properties concealing the single street lamp in the centre of the footpath which is impacting the illumination of the lower length of the footpath's surface. A number of residents are rightly concerned. A serious assult took place on this footpath and it is imperative that the path is lit properly to prevent falls and accidents and to address public safety.
Please do contact us with any issues or concerns you may have. We answer all our constituents' correspondence and value your comments. If you want your concern addressed by your local team, please follow the link above.