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Planning Issues => Planning Applications => Topic started by: Ratty on April 19, 2011, 12:45:24 PM



Title: Seething Wells Filter Beds
Post by: Ratty on April 19, 2011, 12:45:24 PM
I was just thinking how irresponsible it is that they have drained the filter beds at such an important time in the aquatic lifecycle when I came across this news (yes, we really do have to be vigilant these days!):

http://www.surreycomet.co.uk/news/8958419.Dates_for_floating_technology_exhibition/?ref=residents-association.com[/url]

[url]http://www.kingstoninformer.co.uk/2011/04/mixed-response-from-residents.html[/url]

There is a very lively discussion going on amongst our cousins in Surbiton.

[url]http://www.surbiton.com/event/11-04-14/public-exhibition-seething-wells-development#comment-11248

What say ye??




Title: Re: Seething Wells Filter Beds
Post by: Ratty on May 04, 2011, 10:46:34 AM
I'm surprised nobody has commented on this?


Title: Re: Seething Wells Filter Beds
Post by: Admin on May 04, 2011, 10:57:01 AM
So am I.

Keen to collect views, but at this stage it is/was just a preview before the *real* planning application is submitted.  A number of developers are using this approach lately.  On the one hand, it is a very good idea to consult locals before putting in an application and can be very constructive.  On the other hand, with the less scrupulous there is a risk that a pre-planning 'consultation' will be used (as with the intense PR effort that accompanied the Jolly Boatman spplication) in some way to "show" that the application has support or at least no objection, or that some tiny modification in it "takes the objections into account".

Let's see what the real application this summer turns out to be like, presumably to Kingston (? - let us know as soon as it is spotted).  Meanwhile, residents' provisional views would be welcome.


Title: Re: Seething Wells Filter Beds
Post by: Keith on May 04, 2011, 11:06:03 AM
The developers web site - and the project in very brief outline is illustrated - here: http://www.hydroproperties.co.uk/projects.php

And here are my personal preliminary views:
- the site as it is is a rather an eyesore and 'something needs to be done' with it
- ideally it would be taken into public ownership and used solely for landscaping/residents' contemplative access to river/wildlife but the chances of that happening are close to zero.  The proposals seem to establish public access to a substantial stretch of riverside walk not there at present.  Those with objections should ideally state what they would like to see there instead, within the bounds of practicality
- the residential development proposed is somewhat eccentric but would blot out less than half the public view from the road so it could be much worse
- the additional traffic movements on the already busy Portsmouth Road would be a telling burden against multiple residential development
- the site is an important breeding ground for bats, some of which species are rare and to be preserved.  The development's light pollution would put paid to the bats' breeding sites.
- the river at that point is not wide and carries heavy traffic, including competitive rowing, skiffing, and sailing courses (Thames A-raters being of particular significance) and the additional marina-related boat movements would be unwelcome to those users


Title: Re: Seething Wells Filter Beds
Post by: craigvmax on May 04, 2011, 03:44:13 PM
is this where that sort of water utility building is or is it expanding the current marina?


Title: Re: Seething Wells Filter Beds
Post by: Admin on May 04, 2011, 05:08:36 PM
This bit:
http://maps.google.co.uk/maps?f=q&source=s_q&hl=en&geocode=&q=Ditton+Reach&aq=&sll=53.800651,-4.064941&sspn=16.314182,46.538086&ie=UTF8&hq=Ditton+Reach&hnear=United+Kingdom&ll=51.394065,-0.315213&spn=0.008395,0.022724&t=h&z=16

downstream of the marina towards Harts Boatyard.

In fact when you look at the satellite view it's pretty clear that it really ought to be restored to river!  The old waterworks took half the river width for its filter beds.... and the recreational value of the river is great.....


Title: Re: Seething Wells Filter Beds
Post by: craigvmax on May 05, 2011, 10:14:44 AM
I have to say, having looked at it, this can only be a good thing for the area.


People are quick to jump on the bandwagon bashing get rich developers but the fact of the matter is, that whole area is currently disgusting and only a huge amount of investment will solve this.

I do agree that the current wildlife should be sympathetically dealt with, rehoused/incorporated in the scheme.

I do see that there would be an impact on traffic but thats an inevitability of life anyway.

Done well and properly this could add a whole new and positive dimension to td/surbiton. the marina is woefully under utilised in my view.


Title: Re: Seething Wells Filter Beds
Post by: Walker2 on May 12, 2011, 10:28:58 AM
I am inclined to agree.  Things cannot be left as they are.  It is ugly and the riverside is of no use except to the bats  Bats are important.  I can't see why a perfect habitat can't be created for them with holes and tunnels in an area shielded from artificial light to replace the old waterworks culverts they nest in.  Improving the spot will take money that can only be expected to come from development and preferably with some public access to the riverside so we all get some benefit.  This scheme looks interesting.


Title: Re: Seething Wells Filter Beds
Post by: Ratty on May 12, 2011, 03:02:42 PM
The law protects the bats existing roosts, so simply building replacement ones elsewhere is an unlikely option. 

A lot had been said about the current state of the site as justification for giving this development the nod. However, when it comes to the Jolly Boatman plot, the of the state is recognised as being part of a cynical strategy by the developers hoping to elicit exactly this same attitude.

The fact that the marina opposite the Holiday Inn is 'woefully under utilised' hardly seems to support the benefits of building yet another one next door. IMHO


Title: Re: Seething Wells Filter Beds
Post by: Ratty on June 06, 2011, 02:32:56 PM
The latest idea: a lido!

http://www.surreycomet.co.uk/news/9065430.Lido_idea_for_historic_filter_bed_site/?ref=surbiton.com


Title: Re: Seething Wells Filter Beds
Post by: craigvmax on June 06, 2011, 03:10:47 PM
that would be nice!

Anything within reason would be better than it is now!


Title: Re: Seething Wells Filter Beds
Post by: craigvmax on November 01, 2011, 01:47:08 PM
anyone know whats going on with this?


Title: Re: Seething Wells Filter Beds
Post by: Keith on November 01, 2011, 02:02:12 PM
Well remembered.

A quick search reveals there is now a formal planning application. The closing date for reactions online is Monday 14th November 2011.

Plans here: http://www.kingston.gov.uk/surbiton_filterbeds

Planning ref  11/16502/FUL Surbiton Filter Beds ,  planning portal at http://maps.kingston.gov.uk/isis_main/planning/planning_search.aspx (http://maps.kingston.gov.uk/isis_main/planning/planning_search.aspx)  use ref 11/16502,  email to:  development.management@rbk.kingston.gov.uk 


Title: Re: Seething Wells Filter Beds
Post by: craigvmax on November 01, 2011, 03:11:09 PM
be very interested to see if this gets through.


Title: Re: Seething Wells Filter Beds
Post by: Ratty on November 01, 2011, 08:54:31 PM
There has been a lot of interesting stuff written about Seething Wells lately

The wildlife of Seething Wells (http://alisonfure.blogspot.com/)

The Hidden Heritage (http://www.seethingwellswater.org/Seething_Wells_-_Surbitons_Hidden_Heritage.html)

I mentioned a production coming up in the Upcoming Events section 'Seething Wells and the defeat  of King Cholera' organised by the people behind these wacky events (http://www.seethingwells.org/Welcome_to_Seething.html) and based on their research of its history.



Title: Re: Seething Wells Filter Beds
Post by: craigvmax on November 03, 2011, 03:08:02 PM
Can anyone actually get in there to see it at the moment?

I could understand the merits of keeping as is if it could be enjoyed by people.


Title: Re: Seething Wells Filter Beds
Post by: Keith on November 03, 2011, 03:17:53 PM
Bats.
http://residents-association.com/tdt39/simply_bats.php

Try a bat cruise next year (good fun)


Title: Re: Seething Wells Filter Beds
Post by: Highways Contact on November 03, 2011, 06:14:29 PM
Craig 

There will be some guided tours in the near future. Tours on roof of Harts, aroudn the beds, inside coal bunkers etc. 

http://www.seethingwellswater.org/Seething_Wells_-_Surbitons_Hidden_Heritage.html

Will keep you posted. 


Title: Re: Seething Wells Filter Beds
Post by: craigvmax on November 04, 2011, 10:02:32 AM
ah thats sounds interesting, cheers


Title: Re: Seething Wells Filter Beds
Post by: Keith on November 04, 2011, 10:41:30 AM
More could be made of this site as a local open space along the river, in a highly urbanised area; a wildlife reserve (particularly bats - some rare -  and passing waterfowl), and a site of  educational and historical interest.

But will the developers have their way?  And will objectors be dismissed as merely nimbies?.... and how would a public restoration be funded?....


Title: Re: Seething Wells Filter Beds
Post by: craigvmax on November 04, 2011, 10:51:35 AM
It would be good if some sort of compromise could be reached, if the developers were made to create public walkways and preserve a certain percentage of the filterbeds whilst making an attractive development with some nice waterfront restaurants then it could potentially be win win


Title: Re: Seething Wells Filter Beds
Post by: Keith on November 11, 2011, 12:58:54 PM
After mulling this over (and taking into consideration the arguments of expediency) I have decided to object and have lodged my objection as follows:

I strongly object to the loss of this open riverside space which should be made a managed and accessible wildlife and public area. It is a site of importance in local history and the history of London, in an area which has been blighted by surrounding developments along the Portsmouth Road. The proposal to develop yet more riverside residential properties for private profit will result in an unacceptable increase in car traffic and access, in boat traffic and access, and above all in the loss of a scarce sanctuary for rare bats which will suffer from light pollution.


Frankly, though I enjoy my food I don't think the restaurant argument has it!  (There will be one pub if the new development goes ahead).

I hope the Residents' Association also files an objection.  However, I would expect the council in Kingston to approve it, in which case I will be trying to follow very closely who benefits financially from this curious enterprise, especially any figures in the local community in this area.  If you dig up anything, let us know.


Title: Re: Seething Wells Filter Beds
Post by: Ratty on November 17, 2011, 11:44:58 AM
Tour dates have now been confirmed.

Seething Wells Tour dates (http://www.seethingwellswater.org/Tour_Dates.html)


Title: Re: Seething Wells Filter Beds
Post by: Admin on November 17, 2011, 01:29:37 PM
Excellent - thanks for keeping us informed, Ratty.  I'll try to go on one, with camera.

I hope the press do too - before it becomes Yet Another Block Of Flats.


Title: Re: Seething Wells Filter Beds
Post by: Ratty on December 12, 2011, 06:36:34 PM
Kingston Courier report: Surbiton river developments could damage local ecology (http://kingstoncourier.co.uk/content/surbiton-river-developments-could-damage-local-ecology)


Title: Re: Seething Wells Filter Beds
Post by: craigvmax on December 19, 2011, 11:07:57 AM
did anybody go and see them?


Title: Re: Seething Wells Filter Beds
Post by: craigvmax on January 10, 2012, 01:56:11 PM
any update on this?


Title: Re: Seething Wells Filter Beds
Post by: Highways Contact on January 10, 2012, 03:54:46 PM
With Kingston planning in a few weeks and with Boris after that. 


Title: Re: Seething Wells Filter Beds
Post by: craigvmax on January 10, 2012, 04:06:36 PM
understood, thx


Title: Re: Seething Wells Filter Beds
Post by: Highways Contact on January 10, 2012, 11:42:44 PM
I see that the IT team at Kingson have lost responses to planning applications in the period from 12-21 December and respondents are reqeusted to resubmit. 
http://www.kingston.gov.uk/browse/environment/planning/planning_applications.htm

This will surely mean that many objections will be lost. I don't get the impression that Kingston are advertising this very widely. What a mess!

When you submit comments, you don't get to keep a copy. Heads will roll! 



Title: Re: Seething Wells Filter Beds
Post by: Ratty on January 13, 2012, 10:10:20 AM
Blog update on Seething Wells: Surbiton Planning Sub-Committee 11.1.12 (http://alisonfure.blogspot.com/2012/01/seething-wells-surbiton-planning-sub.html)


Title: Re: Seething Wells Filter Beds
Post by: BlueSky on January 13, 2012, 06:42:56 PM
Can we (local residents) get access to this interesting place on a permanent basis?


Title: Re: Seething Wells Filter Beds
Post by: Highways Contact on January 15, 2012, 09:41:35 AM
The planning application included access and an extended path... if it ever happens. The current owners aren’t' letting anyone get anywhere near the beds. In terms of the planning process, I had a letter from Kingston. The process is:
1) Considered by the Surbiton Neighbourhood Committee for comment on 11 Jan. 
2) Council's Development Control Committee for determination on 25 Jan.
3) Stage 2 referral to Boris who has the final say. 


Title: Re: Seething Wells Filter Beds
Post by: Highways Contact on January 17, 2012, 12:01:10 PM
Now going to a "special meeting" on 23 Feb. 


Title: Re: Seething Wells Filter Beds
Post by: craigvmax on January 17, 2012, 12:16:51 PM
hmm interesting. I have to admit, I'm in two minds about this one.

As they stand, the filter beds are inaccessable to the community yet I do acknowledge their merits for wildlife and equally their extraordinary history.

But, I do think its a shame that they cant be accessed be local residents, wildlife groups, conservation teams, schools etc.

Whilst I have absolutely no doubt that the sole motive by the developer is profit (which I do understand), I do think that if they will embrace the community in some way then it could be beneficial to everyone.

I also think that a well done marina complex with smart restaurants and property could do wonders for the area and be a pleasant addition, again, I acknowledge that there would be increased traffic, both road and on the river though.

As I say, not leaning one way or the other but I do see both sides


Title: Re: Seething Wells Filter Beds
Post by: Ratty on January 17, 2012, 12:53:27 PM
This is the Surrey Comet report on the last meeting (http://www.surreycomet.co.uk/news/9469062.Objections_deal_blow_to_Surbiton_filter_bed_plans/?ref=surbiton.com)

For me, that stretch of the river is one of the most pleasant either walking along Barge Walk or boating down to Kingston. There is a really nice feeling of being away from it all - albeit marred by the arrival or the Holiday Inn, Storage Place and now a big sign for Cooper's MINI showroom. 


Title: Re: Seething Wells Filter Beds
Post by: craigvmax on January 17, 2012, 02:16:20 PM
makes interesting reading, thx for posting. Looks like it could go either way then


Title: Re: Seething Wells Filter Beds
Post by: Ratty on August 22, 2012, 11:23:03 AM
Quote from: Admin on August 22, 2012, 10:11:11 AM
You may also have seen the latest indications , though not in our planning district, of improved proposals for the Seething Wells site.  This again followed the initial tussle when there were people aplenty saying "go on, let them do it, anything's better than what is there now," and others who took a firmer and further-sighted line.


Regrettably the indications of improved proposals were in fact flimflamming on the part of the developer, Hydro properties. click here for details (http://www.friendsofseethingwells.org/2012/08/05/new-hydro-plan-sunk-by-pr-backfire/)


Title: Re: Seething Wells Filter Beds
Post by: Admin on August 22, 2012, 01:48:42 PM
Many thanks for that, Ratty.  Most interesting.  I quote:
"The integrity of Filter Bed site owners, Hydro, has come into further question with false claims in marketing and media intended to promote their cosmetic re-naming of their  development plans as “The Sanctuary Surbiton”.

Quite contrary to claims in the press, online, and the glossy brochure that Hydro has just delivered to 10,000 Surbiton residents, The Wildfowl and Wetlands Trust (WWT) has not “agreed to join the [developer’s] team”.

The Trust felt strongly enough that they issued a statement making clear that WWT

    “is not involved with any planning application for the Seething Wells filter beds in Surbiton. WWT Consulting is not part of the project and not involved with the application”."


Interesting also to note that the "glossy brochure" that portrayed the WWT as supporting the proposals (which was also delivered to me) and its covering circular appears to have been produced by Kingston based political PR firm Cratus Communications - the very firm that the defeated Conservative candidate for Thames Ditton works for.

Shades of Lexington Communications' close-to-the-wind campaign as hired guns for Gladedale on the Jolly Boatman site.  Can you believe anything a lobbying company says?!


Title: Re: Seething Wells Filter Beds
Post by: Ratty on August 22, 2012, 02:06:11 PM
Quote from: Admin on August 22, 2012, 01:48:42 PM
Interesting also to note that the "glossy brochure" that portrayed the WWT as supporting the proposals (which was also delivered to me) was produced by Kingston based political PR firm Cratus Communications - the very firm that the defeated Conservative candidate for Thames Ditton works for.



Ah yes, Hugh Evans - the boy who said he was "going to bring a new flavour into politics in Thames Ditton". Looks like it would have left a bad taste in the mouth  ;).


Title: Re: Seething Wells Filter Beds
Post by: Admin on August 22, 2012, 02:20:52 PM
From Cratus Communications own modest description of themselves:

"When it comes to dealing with the media, communicating with audiences who influence public policy, solving problems and amplifying a message there’s no substitute for real life experience.

Cratus employs people that have been politicians at all levels ..... They have mixed their real life experiences with politics and understand how to frame your messages....
Cratus will intelligently and creatively craft your strategy to change local or national policy, to get support behind your ideas and importantly, win permission for you to deliver your project. "


Title: Re: Seething Wells Filter Beds
Post by: Admin on August 22, 2012, 02:33:49 PM
The printed circular from Cratus for "The Sanctuary" states  "We are delighted to announce that WWT Consulting have agreed to join the team and help deliver our vision..."

WWT however, acknowledging that they have been approached, state: "WWT Consulting is currently not part of this project. Future involvement will only take place if the planning process demonstrates that there will be no environmental or ecological damage."

Although "The Sanctuary"  letter is signed by Philip Wallis of Hydro Properties, the developers, the email address given is TheSanctuary@cratus.co.uk and the address of "The Sanctuary" is Unit 5 Park Works, 16-18 Park Road, Kingston upon Thames, Surrey, KT2 6BG which happens to be the address of "The London Head Office" of Cratus Communications. (How many offices do you think they really have LOL?!)


Title: Re: Seething Wells Filter Beds
Post by: Admin on August 22, 2012, 02:38:26 PM
.... Alison Fure, a (genuine) wildlife consultant and specialist in bats (there are at least seven species at Seething Wells, some rare and breeding there), has more info here: http://alisonfure.blogspot.co.uk/2012/08/the-sanctuary-and-wwt.html


Title: Re: Seething Wells Filter Beds
Post by: craigvmax on August 28, 2012, 04:08:55 PM
can anyone recall when it goes to any sort of committee?


Title: Re: Seething Wells Filter Beds
Post by: Ratty on October 12, 2012, 04:00:58 PM
The Energy Secretary, Kingston and Surbiton MP Edward Davey, has urged the developers to "give up now" (http://www.surreycomet.co.uk/news/9980683.Tide_turns_on_floating_homes/)on their plans.


Title: Re: Seething Wells Filter Beds
Post by: Admin on January 15, 2013, 10:22:36 AM
The new planning application will be taken by Kingston's Development Control Committee on 22 January at 19.30.  See http://www.kingston.gov.uk/council_and_democracy/committeeminutes/moderngov.htm?mgl=ieListDocuments.aspx&MId=6424


The sports issues are summarised here. (http://residents-association.com/pdfs/Seething_Wells_development_sports_issues_Jan2013.pdf).  The (rather thin) summary of the public consultation is here. (http://www.kingston.gov.uk/icon_pdf.gif)



Title: Re: Seething Wells Filter Beds
Post by: Ratty on January 15, 2013, 11:43:48 AM
I see Richmond's MP Zac Goldsmith has added his voice to the opposition (link (http://www.friendsofseethingwells.org/2013/01/11/community-deserves-a-truly-impressive-proposal-that-is-not-what-theyve-been-offered/)). Will the RA be taking a position?

Craig, is the Blue Chip Stand-Up Paddleboard Club related to your venture? 


Title: Re: Seething Wells Filter Beds
Post by: Admin on January 16, 2013, 12:41:49 PM
Quote from: Ratty on January 15, 2013, 11:43:48 AM
I see Richmond's MP Zac Goldsmith has added his voice to the opposition (link (http://www.friendsofseethingwells.org/2013/01/11/community-deserves-a-truly-impressive-proposal-that-is-not-what-theyve-been-offered/)). Will the RA be taking a position?


An excellent question - thank you for putting it, Ratty - which I relayed to colleagues last night and Graham will write to Kingston on the matter (objecting).

It is rare that the Association writes formally on planning applications outside the wards of TD & WG, but not unheard-of (e.g. Boatman site); rarer to write on planning applications that are not even in Elmbridge, but it was felt that this is not only very close by but the community activities of residents are definitely affected, as will be the traffic crawl in rush-hours along the Portsmouth Road.

The main grounds for objection are:  river use; egress/ingress on Portsmouth Road with traffic implications; riverine views; bats (either the law is serious about protecting rare bat breeding places, or it isn't.  They will be driven away by light pollution).

I gather that the planning officer in Kingston is recommending approval.



Title: Re: Seething Wells Filter Beds
Post by: craigvmax on January 22, 2013, 09:24:00 AM
apparently the planners decide on this today


Title: Re: Seething Wells Filter Beds
Post by: craigvmax on January 22, 2013, 10:45:59 AM
Quote from: Ratty on January 15, 2013, 11:43:48 AM
I see Richmond's MP Zac Goldsmith has added his voice to the opposition (link (http://www.friendsofseethingwells.org/2013/01/11/community-deserves-a-truly-impressive-proposal-that-is-not-what-theyve-been-offered/)). Will the RA be taking a position?

Craig, is the Blue Chip Stand-Up Paddleboard Club related to your venture? 


sorry Ratty, missed this, no not us, we are Island Paddles


Title: Re: Seething Wells Filter Beds
Post by: mg on January 22, 2013, 06:09:17 PM
Does anyone know what happened today with this issue?


Title: Re: Seething Wells Filter Beds
Post by: Highways Contact on January 22, 2013, 06:22:40 PM
Decision is tonight  - 7.30pm I will update in due course. 


Title: Re: Seething Wells Filter Beds
Post by: mg on January 22, 2013, 07:02:02 PM
Thank you Highways :)


Title: Re: Seething Wells Filter Beds
Post by: Highways Contact on January 22, 2013, 11:05:46 PM
The application was refused 8 to 0. Areas considered included: Ecology, heritage, river use, metropolitan open land (MOL), viability and affordable housing. In summary, it didn't offer enough "enabling" to overcome building on MOL. The officer was incredibly pro the scheme.. "there will be a nice little marina" and the members very anti.  There is zero affordable housing in what is a very big scheme. Interesting parallels to the Jolly Boatman in that the viability numbers weren't released.  Contrib to CIL was £500k (all goes to Boris) and £276k to education and less than £300k to affordable housing.  English Heritage supported as did the Environment Agency. 


Title: Re: Seething Wells Filter Beds
Post by: mg on January 23, 2013, 09:10:11 AM
Thanks for the update.  Does this then go to appeal or is that it now?  


Title: Re: Seething Wells Filter Beds
Post by: Highways Contact on January 23, 2013, 09:22:42 AM
Given their work to date they may appeal, particulary given that the EA, English Heritage and the officer were so pro the scheme. They didn't provide a logic for building on MOL.


Title: Re: Seething Wells Filter Beds
Post by: Portmeirion on January 26, 2013, 09:54:02 PM
I'm fairly new to the area, and like to know  is it possible to get access to seething wells for walking the dog etc, on my aerial map it looks interesting.



Title: Re: Seething Wells Filter Beds
Post by: rudi on January 27, 2013, 12:36:20 PM
No. its a piece of derelict degenerating land which is slowly reverting back to nature. We're losing a remarkable testament to Victorian engineering because of some bats! Which like their amphibious counter parts (frogs) who lived by the (once maligned) Newbury bypass, will ultimately be saved and flourish in their same surroundings if the scheme does go ahead! 


Title: Re: Seething Wells Filter Beds
Post by: Evergreen on January 27, 2013, 02:02:20 PM
Quote from: rudi on January 27, 2013, 12:36:20 PM
No. its a piece of derelict degenerating land which is slowly reverting back to nature. We're losing a remarkable testament to Victorian engineering because of some bats! Which like their amphibious counter parts (frogs) who lived by the (once maligned) Newbury bypass, will ultimately be saved and flourish in their same surroundings if the scheme does go ahead! 


Actually, rudi, bats were not among the reasons given in the refusal, which for the records reads

"The development proposed, in particular the residential dwellings on the pontoon and the restaurant, result in built development that would not preserve the openness of the Metropolitan Open Land and would have a detrimental impact on its visual amenity. The development is therefore inappropriate development on Metropolitan Open Land and the justification put forward as enabling development is not sufficient to represent “very special circumstances”.

As such the proposal fails to comply with Policies CS3 (The Natural and Green Environment), and DM5 (Green Belt, Metropolitan Open Land (MOL) and Open Space Needs) of the LDF Core strategy (April 2012) and Policy 7.17 (Metropolitan Open Land) of the London Plan 2011."


Since you mention bats, the matter there is that despite the most generous and thoughtful plans of Hydro Properties to provide them with a lovely environment, the bats who hate light pollution would b****r off in search of darker places and a breeding site for rare species would be lost.  There are laws protecting bats and if they were thought fit to be enacted then they should be enforced, wouldn't you say?

I agree about the desirability of preserving the engineering (and health) history of the place but this is not the way to do it, the traffic and river traffic aspects are bad and in fifty years time long after Hydro Properties have spent their gains or banked them in Cayman we would be left with a decaying floating cruise liner cluttering the skyline as well as the Portsmouth Road.


Title: Re: Seething Wells Filter Beds
Post by: rudi on January 27, 2013, 03:22:09 PM
I'm very happy for it not to be built on and for the land to be restored/along with the surviving infrastructure into an open space amenity for all to enjoy but who would do this? At the moment its rots by the year and look disgraceful.


Title: Re: Seething Wells Filter Beds
Post by: Portmeirion on January 27, 2013, 04:17:47 PM
I'm a little confused here, if its Metroplitan Open Land why is it not open to the Public then?

Are you saying we are not allowed on the site because of the bats - have I seen too many Dracula films but don't they come out only during the night. The park can presumably be kept shut during the evening like bushy/Richmond?

Does anyone know who to speak to get temporary access and also to discuss a more long term arrangement.  Parking is a further issue also, there is some at TDM mariner I know or in the Holiday Inn.


Title: Re: Seething Wells Filter Beds
Post by: Highways Contact on January 27, 2013, 05:28:09 PM
Yes, it does seem odd but the reality is that Hydra bought the land off Thames Water... reportedly for £1m mil. They took a big risk buying it without planning permission. Bats are an issue, but they aren't the only relevant ecology. At the planning meeting Hydra cliamed that the land was hostile, i.e. dangerous. This was heavily disputed by the members who had recently conducted a site visit who didn't think that "overgrown" equated to hostile.  Hydra are in a difficult spot. They will appeal but if they come back with a reduced and smaller scheme,  their viability numbers which argued for zero affordable housing will seem very contrived. Hydra haven't given access to anyone.  


Title: Re: Seething Wells Filter Beds
Post by: Portmeirion on January 27, 2013, 07:26:23 PM
I've seen the plans now, £1 million actually appears quite cheap considering the potential gains.

I actually quite like the plans, myself and there is actually quite a lot of open space, I also noted the Riverside walk extension, so if this there intention, why can't they permit access along the river. It will be a great asset to our community to have an almost direct bike / pat route to Kingston.



Title: Re: Seething Wells Filter Beds
Post by: peter on January 29, 2013, 10:34:44 PM
Not too sure about this development.  I think the site as it stands needs to be brought to use but there should be a large element of public space, opening up the riverside walk to Kingston. I think the scheme proposed is not too bad although I think traffic may be a problem and they could do with more bus routes running along Portsmouth Road (pref through Thames Ditton)!  

I also think that a footbridge to the massively under used Home Park (part of Hampton Court grounds) would definitely sell the scheme better.  Anyone know why there are not more entrances to Home Park(e.g. From the river bank)?   

And on the subject of bridges, how about a footbridge somewhere in Thames Ditton to the other side of the river?  I've gone bridge mad!  Or re-open the secret foot tunnel to Hampton Court from Ye Olde Swan..  ;)


Title: Re: Seething Wells Filter Beds
Post by: BlueSky on September 10, 2013, 10:54:04 PM
Is something happening here, the gates were open this morning with a number of cars onsite. The cars weren't flash so maybe it's squatters or an environmental consultants??

I find it shocking that this space is not open to the public


Title: Re: Seething Wells Filter Beds
Post by: Highways Contact on November 22, 2013, 01:20:23 PM
The appeal starts on Monday and runs to Friday. Closing remarks at 3pm next Friday.  


Title: Re: Seething Wells Filter Beds
Post by: BlueSky on November 28, 2013, 03:51:08 PM
I am very interested in this project but would love to know if it will have a positive or negative effect on the flood-plain?


Title: Re: Seething Wells Filter Beds
Post by: Ratty on November 30, 2013, 04:26:33 PM
Developers set to make £14 million if appeal goes their way (http://www.yourlocalguardian.co.uk/news/10844828.Floating_homes_firms_set_to_make___14m_from_filter_beds_development/)


Title: Re: Seething Wells Filter Beds
Post by: Ratty on March 05, 2014, 01:16:42 PM
Planning inspector dismisses floating homes appeal (http://www.surreycomet.co.uk/news/11054417.Floating_homes_plan_for_Seething_Wells_rejected_by_planning_inspector/?ref=var_0)


Title: Re: Seething Wells Filter Beds
Post by: Highways Contact on March 05, 2014, 03:43:19 PM
That's wonderful news. I sat through the planning committee meeting and was very impressed by the non-partisan open and very considered discussion by all Kingston members. The officer who recommended permission went out of her way to permit the scheme and ignored anything that questioned the scheme.  A great victory for The Friends of Seething Wells. 

Here is the decision.   

http://www.pcs.planningportal.gov.uk/pcsportal/ViewCase.asp?caseid=2197943&coid=67733


Title: Re: Seething Wells Filter Beds
Post by: Walker2 on March 09, 2014, 06:35:19 AM
Do you think the Council would have refused permission, and defended their refusal at appeal, if the site had happened to be in Elmbridge?  Not likely!


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