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Achilles Street Stop And Listen Campaign

At a ‘consultation’ on the 21st May 2016- Lewisham Council revealed its plans to redevelop the Achilles Street area. The Council is proposing to demolish all of the homes and local businesses in the Achilles Street area in order to build high rise, high density housing in partnership with private developers.

  • The Achilles Street area – is a low density housing estate, which runs along either side of Achilles Street between Clifton Rise and Pagnell Street. It also includes the flats and businesses on the east side of Clifton Rise and the flats, maisonettes and businesses along the New Cross Road between Clifton Rise and Pagnell Street (excluding the Venue and the old bank building).

 

 

 

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Campaign Afternoon

Saturday 16 September

Time:    5 pm (Film starts at 5.30 )

Venue:  New Cross Learning, 283-285 New Cross Road

 We are launching Achilles Fanzine ( 2nd print run )

Information will be available about the campaign ahead of Lewisham going to Mayor and Cabinet on 4 October ( See below).

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We will be showing the critically acclaimed film:

Dispossession: The Great Social Housing Swindle  

Refreshments and short discussion after the film

Free

 All Welcome

Lewisham are still planning on going to Mayor and Cabinet on Wednesday 4th October with their proposals to demolish the Achilles Street area. At the meeting on the 4th they will decide whether or not to proceed with the plans for demolition and redevelopment. If you want to raise objections or concerns about the demolition of homes, businesses and community organisations or about the destruction of the local community then write to or email your local councillors, MP and the Mayor and Cabinet and let them know. See below for email and postal addresses of local councillors, MP and the Mayor and Cabinet.

Lobbying Info

FACT SHEET

Achilles Street Stop and Listen Campaign

Updated FACT SHEET July 2017- Full Version (FACTS 1-7) click here: Factsheet July 2017

Extracts Below.

Fact 4 – Lewisham Council has failed in its duties as a landlord and managed the decline of the Achilles Street area

Lewisham has failed in its responsibilities as a landlord to maintain and upkeep the buildings (homes and businesses) in the Achilles Street area. When buildings become run down because a landlord has neglected them it is called managed decline’; and this is what Lewisham has done to the Achilles Street area. The Council is now using its own failings as a landlord as an excuse to demolish the decent and structurally sound homes and businesses in the area.

Fact 5 – Lewisham’s plans for the Achilles Street area have been designed by private property developers

Lewisham’s plans for the Achilles Street area are based on a report by Savills (a private

property developer), which was submitted to the government in 2016. In the report Savills argue that local authorities should go into partnership with the private sector (meaning property developers like themselves) to ‘redevelop’ housing estates in prime locations across London.

Savills idea of ‘redevelopment’ (most people call it social cleansing and gentrification) is to demolish so-called ‘sink’ estates and in their place build high rise, high density ‘urban villages’.

The designs that Lewisham have presented at the four token ‘consultations’ are identical to case studies in the report by Savills. So why Lewisham (a Labour council?) wants to destroy a long standing community and participate in a ‘redevelopment’ project that is first and foremost designed to boost the profits of private property developers, is only a question that they can answer.

Fact 6 – Redeveloping the Achilles Street area will not address the shortage of council housing in Lewisham

To redevelop the area Lewisham will have to go into partnership with a private property developer. This means the vast majority of the new homes (currently estimated to be between 350 and 450) will be private, for sale and rent at market rates. Private property developers always use ‘viability assessments’ to reduce the percentage of social/‘affordable’ housing in any new development; and this has consistently happened in projects across London. The Lewisham Gateway project, for example, had a target of 20 percent ‘affordable’ housing and through viability assessments property developers managed to get away with building no ‘affordable’ housing at all. This was in spite of the fact that the property developers for Lewisham Gateway were given the land for nothing by the Council and on top of this they received £22 million of public funding (£20 million from the Homes & Communities Agency and the Greater London Authority and £2 million from Lewisham Council). So by going into partnership with a private property developer to redevelop the Achilles Street area Lewisham could ultimately end up reducing the number of council homes in the borough.

Notes and Sources from the Achilles Street Stop and Listen Fact Sheet : Factsheet Notes & Sources July 2017

Here is Lewisham Councils response to our fact sheet -which doesn’t address any of the key facts 2017.07.26 Lewisham Council Response

Achilles Walk

As part of Open Garden Estates weekend we are inviting visitors to walk through the Achilles Street Area in the heart of New Cross, sharing and listening to the narratives and history of the area, identifying trees and wildlife, and seeing the green spaces, homes and shops that are under threat of demolition. The walk will end at New Cross Learning for a discussion and refreshments.

Date: Saturday 17 June, 2017

Meet: At the entrance to Fordham park, on the corner of Achilles Street and Clifton Rise

https://goo.gl/maps/THxeizT8xVG2

Time: 2 pm

Walk: Approx 1 hour. The walk will end at New Cross Learning for refreshments and discussion.

All Very Welcome

 

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Questions asked at Mayor and Cabinet meeting and first Petition presented.

Questions asked by Achilles Street Residents at a Lewisham Council Public Meeting on November 23, 2016 – still awaiting responses with regard to the option of refurbishment, costings and structural surveys.

Questions asked at Lewisham Council Public meeting