Friday, 15 July 2011

Vauxhall: Spring Gardens robbery, Linear Walkway cancelled, Ugly pillars completed and Vauxhall City Farm small animals for sale


Well, it's all go in Vauxhall this week.  A shooting on Tyers Street (victim ok), a major fire on Salamanca Place (no serious injuries), a consultation on Spring Mews (proposed hotel/student development near Spring Gardens), and a whole host of smaller stories as follows...

1.  Twitter has been all ablaze this week with a report that two men were violently robbed on Sunday 3rd of July at 1:40am whilst walking along next to Spring Gardens / Vauxhall Pleasure Gardens.  The victims were returning home when set upon by about 8 men, some of whom were on bikes.  One of the victims suffered serious facial injuries.  The robbery took place after Pride, but it was not considered to be an homophobic incident.  Anybody who was around that evening and might have witnessed the crime should call DC Annabel Davenport from Lambeth Priority Crime Unit on 020 8649 2477 or contact Crime Stoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111. 

I'd urge residents, visitors and revellers to be very careful in the early mornings (between 1am and 6am) because this area is regularly deserted and revellers are easy targets for muggers.  In preference to short-cutting through the park at that time, it's better to stick to the main roads (Kennington Lane and Albert Embankment) if at all possible.

2.  Transport Mark has been very observant and has noticed that the proposed Vauxhall Linear Walkway, part of a CLS development, which might have entailed the removal of Vauxhall ski slope bus station, appears now to be off the cards.  In a letter from GL Hearn Property Consultants to the Senior Planner at Lambeth Council, we learn that there exists "a revised scheme which no longer includes an elevated walkway".  So... bye-bye Linear walkway, and hello to some, as yet unannounced scheme that may or may not include demolishing Vauxhall gyratory and replacing it with some unknown thing that is yet to be unveiled in a consultation that hasn't yet been announced.

3.  The Vauxhall Linear walkway may be off the drawing board, but linear parks are all the rage.  Cllr Mark Harrison is soliciting views on the possibility of converting Tyers Street (not sure whether that's all or part) into a linear park.  A full consultation and public letters will be forthcoming if the idea is proceedable, but if you have any early views, do get in touch with him.

4.  The ugly pillars / giant cigarette butts or striking columns (delete as applicable) have been completed and named as the entrance to Spring Gardens / Vauxhall Pleasure Gardens.  Talk about a massive waste of money.  I will not repeat the conversation I heard earlier this week about contacting Dulux to use them for an advertising campaign!  Needless to say, they are, in my view, horrific and entirely out of keeping with other local buildings.  But since Vauxhall is suffering from architectural mish-mash issues generally, it probably won't matter too much.  It has taken absolutely ages (a year?) to erect the monstrosites and it's really good to have the entrance to Spring Gardens fixed (just in time) for summer.  SE11 Action Team Princes' Ward Councillors (Labour) blog reported the finished master piece and there's more info over there.  Apparently, we're to endure an opening ceremony soon....

5.  Tradescant Road reports that the gates to Vauxhall Park which were fixed and then hit by a motorcycle have finally been fixed again.  Hurray!

6.  Cabrini Children's Centre... I'm afraid I don't know much about this one, but a petition has been launched to prevent the closure of Vauxhall's Cabrini Children's Centre.  I had no idea what this was or that it even existed, but I think it is part of the Catholic settlement project at St Anne's Community Centre, 40-46 Harleyford Road.  They're aiming their petition at Lambeth Council and the trustees of the charity.  If you've more info. and want it publicised, drop me a line (details in About Me / Contact).

7.  The Commission for Architecture and Built Environment have waded into the "there's no masterplan for the Vauxhall Nine Elms Battersea high towers mess", which I was going to expand upon, but Tradescant Road has a great piece on his blog, so I recommend that you go and read it there since much of the info. above is behind a pay wall.  Essentially, CABE are hoping to bring all of the Vauxhall developers together to (hopefully) stop the skyscrapers being submitted to Lambeth/Wandsworth in such an adhoc manner.  If only CABE had been reading Lurking about SE11, they could have started planning earlier...

8.  Vauxhall City Farm are selling off some of their small animals.  £35 for a pair of baby guinea pigs, £40 for a giant rabit (eek!) and chickens of varying sizes/prices.  For more info, phone 0207 582 4204 and ask to speak to Jo, or just go and visit them on the farm.


Anonymous said...

It's a shame that there seems to be quite a bit of anti-social behaviour in the area recently, and it's concerning.

I've seen youths suspiciously hanging around parked cars, kids leaping over people's fences/walls, people leaving feces on many of the footpaths and even young children just peeing in the streets while their parents just watch. What's going on?!

As for those two pillars. Wow, I didn't realise they were finished. I thought they were waiting for a nice arch, or something, to cross the two. Apparently not.

Good to see you're back reporting from the area, though, Lurker.

SE11_lurker said...

I understand from a coiple of people that the pillars may still be awaiting some kind of statues on the top, so maybe they're not 100% there yet. Either way, there's not much left to happen.

If you're particularly concerned re. petty crime and vandalism and unruliness etc. I suggest the Princes or Oval or Bishops ward Safer Neighbourhood Teams. They meet every 6 weeks or so, and you can just sort of pitch up with the issues as far as I know.

I've been told that several people have suggested Neighbourhood Watch schemes etc. and that may be something worth approaching KOV or Kennington Association about.

Thanks for welcoming me back. I go quiet periodically because of the sheer amount of time it takes to keep things running here.

Andrew Orange said...

You have no idea how much I want a GIANT RABBIT! I will call him Harvey.

SE11_lurker said...

Andrew, maybe I will just call you Wallace :-) I think a giant were-rabit might scare off Tradescites though!!

Anonymous said...

I am massively opposed to removal of the gyratory.

a 2 way system would be much slower, almost certainly more polluting, and it would be effectively cutting off motorists from easy access north of the river and making it years slower to get to the M4. there are plenty of motorists in se11.

I hope any such plan will be vigorously opposed by the might of the se11 lurker

SE11_lurker said...

I've been gently rooting for a "remove the two-way gyratory" option. But... if removing the gyratory would increase pollution and/or increase danger for cyclists or pedestrians, then I'd reconsider. I'm of the view that having the bus station in the middle of Vauxhall rather makes everything worse. But I can't imagine "move the bus station" will be an option :-)

At present, I'm awaiting the consultation as I'd like to see what options are being worked up before actually promoting any particular view.

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