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YOUR VOICE: ‘Deep concerns’ over regeneration proposals

James Giles



Kingston Green Party have deep concerns about plans to regenerate the Cambridge Road Estate by creating a London ‘housing zone’. The plan has all the indications of the estate being razed to the ground, a loss of truly affordable rented homes and the existing community dispersed and forced to live elsewhere.
The scandalous track record of Kingston Council – by both current and previous administrations – of providing no new homes over the past decade needs to be reversed. But, the solution to tackling this cannot be to follow the failed template of many other London councils.
Darren Johnson, Green Party London Assembly and chair of the GLA Housing Committee has exposed that of all the completed regeneration schemes in London in recent years only 20% of the original tenants have returned to the new developments. This begs the question just who are these new schemes really for – those needing secure homes on social/council rents or new opportunities for investors and developers to make yet more money from the already inflated housing market.
Andree Frieze, Green Party candidate for South West London Assembly, says: “We all agree that Kingston needs many more truly affordable homes, but demolition is not always the answer. The Council must be open to other ideas and make better use of architects to think beyond the ‘knock-it-all-down-and-rebuild scenario’. Any plans for the Cambridge Road Estate must have the overwhelming and transparent support of those already living there.”
Kingston Green Party believes that any regeneration plans should include:
– Plans developed with the democratic involvement of existing residents;
– Right of Return for all council tenants on existing tenancy terms and rent;
– No loss in the number of existing social rented homes;
– At least 50% of new homes above replaced stock to be for social/council rent;
– 50% of sale properties to be for shared ownership;
– No bulks sales: one buyer, one home;
– Kingston Council to remain the freeholder – i.e. no sell off to developers;
– Right of first refusal of a new home for the private tenants living in the homes already sold under the right to buy;
– A fair deal for occupying leaseholders;
– Full transparency on finances and viability reports;
– Sustainable build, with future-proofing features to reduce carbon emissions.

James Giles is the Editor of the Kingston Enquirer, covering local news and events in Kingston, New Malden, Surbiton, Tolworth and Chessington.

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1 Comment

1 Comment

  1. Muttley

    18th April 2016 at 10:01 pm

    Good call, consultation so far has been minimal and it is reported that residents who expressed doubts about regeneration were not invited to join the steering group for consultation. The Housing Consultative Committee is being abolished, so any real say by residents has been weakened. Now a Freedom of Information request has shown that the Council’s figures don’t seem stack up, especially where the residents are concerned. This is looking more and more like a money making wheeze, the only problem is shifting the residents out before they realise what’s happening. And this is just the first estate the Council have their eyes on. It is not looking good.

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Kingston Town

Award ceremony celebrates achievements of Kingston children with Special Educational Needs

James Giles




Children and young people with special educational needs and disabilities in Kingston and Richmond have been given recognition for their accomplishments at an awards ceremony.

The awards run by Kingston and Richmond’s social enterprise Achieving for Children (AfC) took place at Clarendon School in Hampton on 20 January. The event is aimed at celebrating the achievements of local children and young people and their impact they have had in inspiring other children, young people and their families.

People from across the two boroughs were invited to nominate an individual or group of children and young people they felt had done something special under four different categories; ‘impact’, ‘inspiration’,‘personal achievement’ and ‘recognition’.

The AfC team received over 100 entries for judging. Nominations were judged by panels made up of a parent, professional and a young person. Twenty nominations were selected as outstanding by the panels.

Cllr Richard Hudson, Cabinet Member with responsibility for Children’s Social Care and Health at Kingston Council, said:

“Having an awards ceremony to recognise the hard work of these individuals is a fantastic idea and are a great way of helping those with special educational needs gain self-confidence. I am confident that they are hugely appreciated by those who receive an award.”

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