Cabinet Member for Housing: Councillor Matthew Bennett
Strategic Director, Neighbourhoods and Growth: Sue Foster
Contact: Neil Vokes, Programme Director: Strategic Capital Projects; Business, Growth and Delivery, NVokes@Lambeth.gov.uk, 0207 926 3068
Nigel Haselden, Clapham Town ward councillor, firstly noted that the extension of time for consultation had been ideal, proving critical to progress. It had been a design-led process, enabling residents to grasp and own the process. The estate was in a strong position to make huge benefits with good transport links, commercial development, and under-subscribed schools and parks on the north side. There had also been consultations for residents, from which the council had learnt lessons to apply to future projects, and it represented an achievement, with community engagement increasing and positive feedback from residents and ward councillors. Scenario 2 was the favoured option and was confident in advocating it for the benefit of Clapham Town residents.
The Leader of the Council invited Cabinet members to comment:
• The Cabinet Member for Adult Social Care said that the incorporation of private sector housing was key for keeping the mix of what makes Lambeth great and was an important part of the borough. She noted that the home environment was essential for the right life balance, and these developments represented a real opportunity, but would require consulting with existing residents and social sector user groups. The new standards of design and build would be vital for those with social needs (e.g. en suite bathrooms for those in need), but not by retrofitting; and asked how this was to be built into proposals.
• The Cabinet Member for Environment and Sustainability commented that despite increasingly high private sector rents and property prices, residents were saying that they wanted to stay in the borough, and regeneration would help this.
• The Cabinet Member for Children and Families was glad to see a reasonably acceptable compromise at Knight’s Walk. She emphasised that nobody in the Council wanted to propose to demolish homes and it was regrettable that was needed. Councillors were sympathetic, and made working with residents a high priority. She noted that Knight’s Walk had not been handled well by the Council at the outset, but that local councillors and residents had arrived at a compromise. However, lessons needed to be learnt from this for future estate regeneration, particularly around involving local people.
• The Deputy Leader of the Council (Policy) noted the difficulties of estate regeneration, but that each estate had been judged separately, with detailed conversations with residents and that this process would carry on throughout the development. However, these difficulties were necessary for the thousands of families in need and it remained the right thing to do.
The Leader of the Council asked officers to respond to how Lambeth was building in appropriate social care needs and asked for reassurance that resident involvement would continue.
• Neil Vokes, Programme Director answered on social care needs that they were creating a Lambeth design brief with guidance and advice on social care housing for the construction of homes across the borough. This involved ongoing resident-officer engagement about specific individual needs, which was being built into the next stages of development, ... view the full minutes text for item 3