Project history

When did this project start?

It appears from the document submitted as part of the planning application that this project has been known to Lewisham Council since early 2020 when the developer, RCT Construction Ltd., submitted pre-application plans and held meetings with Lewisham Planning Services (ref: PRE/20/116183).

An image from this pre-planning submission is shown in one of the full application documents and depicts a full width and height terrace of five three story houses.

Early concept, RCT Construction Ltd.

How did the project evolve?

After this meeting RCT incorporated a suggested modification to the plan which broke up the upper floor with the inclusion of a front to back balcony space between each house. According to the Design and Access Statement submitted with the full application this results in:

"ensuring privacy between the houses and neighbours, refining the materiality and detailing, and ensuring adequate lighting to the houses."

Many in the community beg to differ.

The full application was submitted on the 10th August 2020.

Full application design, RCT Construction Ltd.

Community consultation

Despite RCT claiming:

"an impressive track-record of delivering high-quality developments in tune with the needs of our partners, occupiers and the communities we work in"

they have not engaged with the community surrounding this project at all.

This is even more puzzling given their early engagement with the Planning Services whose own Local Development Framework includes a "statement of community involvement" which says:

"Consultation should commence early in the process to enable the community to influence decisions and to seek consensus on essential issues (wherever possible). "

Despite this, the community has been given the bare minimum statutory requirements in order to give feedback. This amounts to access to the documents submitted in the application and 24 days from the date of notice to comment and raise objections. Letters dated the 27th August 2020 were received by residents on the 2nd September requiring comments no later than the 20th September 2020. Subsequently Public Notices were posted at the entrance to the site dated the 2nd September 2020 requiring submissions no later than the 26th September 2020.

No opportunity has been given to the community to make suggestions and collaborate with other parties to ensure that the project is "in tune with the needs of the community."