Here are some updates on stories we carried earlier in the year and beyond.
One of the ‘Five Things that South Londoners Miss’ was the Montague Arms pub in New Cross. Well, glad to say that it reopened earlier this year and it’s as weird and wonderful as ever! Also there’s lots of gigs and stuff happening. Great to see that not every pub that closes becomes a housing development.
Another of those things missed is Wimbledon football ground at Plough Lane SW19. The ‘Bring the Dons Home’ campaign has been gathering momentum as an exhibition of plans was held over the summer and a planning application to build a new ground on the site of the greyhound stadium has just been submitted to Wandsworth Council.
February saw our visit to the huge re-development scheme ‘Nine Elms on the South Bank’. At that time most of it was still on the drawing board, but any of you who take the train to Victoria will get a close up of just how much progress has been made, including the rebuilding of Battersea Power Station. The scheme is easily the biggest in the whole of the UK, more than double the size of any other re-development.
In March we wrote about Five Things We Won’t Miss, and included in that was the Heygate Estate in Walworth. Demolition is now complete and rebuilding has already started. What will be missed though is the ‘affordable’ housing which the former estate provided. Local community groups want a minimum of 35% low rent housing – the outcome might be different though.
In the same article we mentioned dissatisfaction with some of the rail franchises operating in our area, in particular Southern, South Eastern and First Capital Connect. On 14th September, Govia took over the FCC franchise and has gone back to the original ‘Thameslink’ branding of the line. In 2015 Govia will also be taking over the Southern routes. Hopefully we’ll see some improvement in the running of these vital networks.
Finally, nearly a year ago we linked Small Business Saturday with the recovery of Herne Hill town centre from the flood of August 2013. We’re glad to say that virtually all the businesses are now back up and running, with one notable exception – the Half Moon pub. Rumours of its demise are, however, premature, as this update from the Herne Hill Forum tells us, but it’s going to be a while yet before this historic pub opens its doors again. Small Business Saturday is on 6th December.