Category Archives: Planning Applications

Massive redevelopment of Benedict Wharf imminent

Plans for the largest development in Cricket Green for a generation are being finalised over Easter.

SUEZ’s plans to move its recycling operations to a site near the Beddington incinerator are expected to result in an outline application being submitted for new housing on Benedict Wharf within the next few weeks.

Around 600 homes are planned, creating an entire new neighbourhood for Mitcham.

We are pressing SUEZ for a development which feels like a natural extension of Mitcham rather than a bolt on area of blocks and flats.

Regrettably, the latest plans include large blocks of flats reaching eight storeys.

We have also asked for a standard of design that will lead to demands to include the new neighbourhood in Cricket Green Conservation Area within ten years.

The development creates a real opportunity to invest in London Road Playing Fields and support local community facilities, including Mitcham Parish Centre. We are also looking for a new route from London Road through the site, across Phipps Bridge and into Morden Hall Park.

The plans should also sort out the Hallowfield Way eyesore and, using land owned by Merton Council, convert this into a residential street with a welcoming entrance to the Conservation Area next to Mitcham Parish Church.

As an outline application we know that SUEZ will not be the developers. If successful we can expect a housebuilder to submit detailed plans and so it will be important that the SUEZ scheme sets standards that cannot be reduced at a later date.

Once the application is submitted all eyes will turn towards Merton Council as both planning authority and owner of much of the adjacent land.

You can see our submission to SUEZ here.

White Hart development plans fall short

The Grade II listed White Hart is one of the most important buildings in Cricket Green.

Prominently located by the historic cricket ground it was originally a coaching inn on the main route from London to Brighton.

The pub has been closed for some time and we have been supportive of some sensitive development to allow for its restoration.

It is all the more disappointing that the plans that have come forward do not do justice to the site and would damage the key views from Cricket Green.

We objected to the large block of flats put forward for the White Hart’s car park last year and they have returned in an amended form with all of the same problems and fewer benefits.

The sensitive demolition of a new extension to the back of the White Hart has been dropped but the flats will still loom over the historic building and may also be visible from Lower Green West.

We have invited the developers to meet and talk about an alternative approach which will provide homes and restore the White Hart so it can rediscover its role as an important asset for the local community.

You can see our latest representations here.

White Hart restoration plans blighted by intrusive flats

The Grade II listed White Hart is one of the most important buildings in Merton and stands prominently at the heart of Cricket Green Conservation Area.

It includes a large area of land to the rear which is the focus of plans for a new block of flats.

We have welcome the proposals to restore and re-open the White Hart and demolish the modern extension to its rear.

Unfortunately the new building proposed as part of the development is less sympathetic.

The architects drawing clearly show it will be visible above the roofline of the White Hart in the key approach along Cricket Green to the south.

Worryingly, there is no information provided on the impact on Lower Green West.

The design of the new flats also doesn’t do justice the the location and the proposed beer garden will spend most of its time in shade. An opportunity has been missed to service the White Hart from the rear and avoid delivery lorries adding to the congestion and road safety problems at Jubilee Corner.

As a consequence we have objected to the plans (see here) and invited the developers to collaborate on an alternative. We would welcome well designed residential development which funds restoration of the White Hart and avoids damage to the Conservation Area.

Read our comments

The future of Benedict Wharf

The long awaited plans for the future of Benedict Wharf have started to emerge.

This is the largest brownfield site in Mitcham and it will become available for development once SUEZ moves its waste facility to a new site on Beddington Lane.

We have previously welcomed the move and the plans to re-use the site for housing. Something in the order of 500-800 homes are planned.

The site has huge potential, including to strengthen links between Mitcham and Morden. It is a little known fact that Mitcham Parish Church is closer to Morden Hall Park than Merton Civic Centre but Benedict Wharf is a major psychological and physical barrier.

The plans revealed by SUEZ at a recent public exhibition are a step in the right direction but miss out on some of the key opportunities for improving access and lack the detail required for us to be confident of the proposals.

There are widespread concerns that the site might be developed for 10 storey blocks of flats looming over the area – including over London Road Playing Fields.

We have asked SUEZ to rethink and provide homes based on houses and streets. We are also keen to see a mix of developers involved, including the potential for custom-build housing and community land trusts.

It is disappointing that SUEZ is limiting community engagement to just one more public exhibition in 2019 and we have asked it to rethink its approach and not rush to a planning application in the Spring.

Read our submission on the December 2018 public consultation

View the information boards shown at the December 2018 public consultation

Let us know what you think – info@mitchamcricketgreen.org.uk

Wandle House plans

We have welcomed plans to separate the Grade II listed Wandle House from the 1960s office block it has been linked for over 50 years.

Wandle House is an important part of Mitcham’s story with links to the assemblage of historic buildings by the ford across the Wandle by Bishopsford Road.

The planned development is an all too rare example of a scheme which will improve the Conservation Area for the Wandle Valley.

There are also opportunities to improve the landscaping and reduce the large area of hard standing and car park.

We are also alert to the possibility of the office block being converted to flats following the precedents of Justin Plaza and Brook House.

You can read our submission here.

Memorial stone at Lower Green West war memorial

Merton Council has submitted an application to itself to install a memorial stone at Lower Green West war memorial.

We secured national listing for the war memorial last year.

The memorial stone will recognise William White, Mitcham’s only Victoria Cross holder from World War I and it will be set flush to the ground immediately in front of the war memorial.

Remarkably, Merton Council had to declare its own application invalid for failing to provide key information and a site plan.

We have welcomed the plans and ask that they are supported by a method statement that sets out how the sensitive installation should be managed and that there are long term guarantees that the stone will be maintained.

You can read our submission here.