Welcome to The Local Issues Page. Here you will find information regarding various campaigns, issues or initiatives that CPNAG consider important to the area. A short explanation of the issue is given along with contact details or, if available, a link to the web-site concerned.
Please use these details or links to become involved with those that interest you.
- Redevelopment of Clapton Pond
- Downs Road/Lower Clapton Road junction
- Pond House
- Clapton Cinematograph
- Millfields former public toilet site
- Tram depot
- The White Hart Hotel
- Clapton Arts Trust
Redevelopment of Clapton Pond
This project is ongoing, with the first phase soon to be underway. The project aims to improve the appearance and useablity of the two public spaces at clapton pond. This page gives some information on the current status of the project, including a presentaion by Land Use Consultants detailing some of the proposals for improving the area with the first lot of funding.
The junction of Downs Road and Lower Clapton Road has for many years not had pedestrian crossing. Tfl are remodelling it at the moment to allow pedestrians to cross in safety. ..
The history of this building is to be added soon. Recent news (as at March 3, 2011) regarding a current planning application, proposing that the building be converted into 5 flats and that 6 family houses be built along the southern edge of the garden, on the site of the former St John’s Ambulance Brigade garages, can be seen as one of the featured articles on this website’s homepage. This proposal is a vast improvement on previous applications. More news will be added as it becomes available.
The former Clapton Cinematograph Theatre at 229 Lower Clapton Road has more recently been used as night club. The building, which dates from 1910, is a rare surviving example of the early purpose built cinemas constructed following the passing of the Cinematograph Act of 1909, which required that film presentations be shown under controlled and licensed conditions.
The Friends of Clapton Cinematograph Theatre (FCCT) have been campaigning for some years, initially on their own, and more recently in partnership with the newly established Clapton Arts Trust, to bring the building back into use for the benefit of the local community.
FCCT have recently made an application for national listing to English Heritage, who are due to make their recommendation shortly. Land Registry records show that the building has recently been the subject of court proceedings arising from allegations of mortgage fraud and FCCT are currently in the process of clarifying the issue of ownership of the building.
Also, a meeting recently took place with the Heritage Lottery Fund but progress on a funding application has been delayed pending English Heritage’s listing decision and the uncertainty about current ownership.
For further information and to get involved with this initiative, see the web-site
Millfields former public toilet site
On the corner of Mildenhall and Millfields Roads, just by Clapton Pond, stands a one-storey building, currently surrounded by hoardings. These were formerly public toiletsand, some years ago, when Hackney Council went through some severe financial difficulties, in order to quickly address these issues they sold off a lot of property,including the toilets, at auction.
Over the years, the site slowly became a nuisance with squatters, drug dealingand car repairs rubbish piling up. Eventually, after some pressure from the localcommunity, the police agreed to force the owner to surround the site with hoardings,something the Council’s planning dept seemed unable to do. Two planningapplications have subsequently been successfully opposed as being unsuitable forabutting a conservation area.
At this point, the current owners are presenting a plan for the site, which they havenot yet fully discussed with the local community or local councillors. The proposal isfor a large modern style building of four storeys with space for another supermarketon the ground level. Notably, there are no provisions in this plan for replacing thepublic toilets, an amenity that would be of great benefit to the area.
Whilst CPNAG has nothing in principle against modern architecture, this proposal isconsidered to be of too large a mass for the site – not being consistent with the scaleof the houses within the two roads, dominating the southeast-facing skyline from thepond. Also, it is not in keeping with the quality of architecture along the Eastern edgeof the pond, namely Pond House (soon to be refurbished), the Alms Houses and thetwo houses remaining from the original Georgian terrace.
It is understood that, whilst the principle of the application is considered bythe Planning Department as broadly acceptable, the design elements needclose scrutiny. There has been quite a lot of objection to the scheme from localresidents and as such the application, if acceptable, will be reported to the PlanningSub Committee for determination. The earliest date that this application will go to SubCommittee will be June 1st.
This locally listed 1871 horse drawn bus and tram depot is home to many artists, craftsmenand allied light industry. Its existence is threatened by the owner’s plans to develop one of thedensest new housing developments (with some added office space) in Hackney at 563 HRH (habitable rooms per hectare).
This development would see commercial space reduced by half and the whole nature of thespace would be changed. The current building includes many large, high ceilinged studiosand workshops with full-length skylights, which are much in demand. The proposed newdevelopment would consist of modern office, and “clean & quiet” light industrial, space, similarto that very nearby, which has been left empty since construction, 4 years ago.
Those campaigning and attempting to acquire the building as part of The Clapton Arts Trust,say that “it is a “heritage asset”* that gives a sense of place and character, binding thecommunity, both because of its history and also the myriad artisans working there today.”
*The depot has been defined as a “heritage asset”, being “locally listed”, as defined byPPS5 (Planning Policy Statement 5) and also as recognised in the new Core Strategy.
The White Hart Hotel
The history of this building is to be added soon. Recent news (as at March 16,2011) regarding the new owners, and their plans, can be seen as one of the featured articles on this website’s home page. More news will be added as it becomes available.
Clapton Arts Trust
Started in 2010, with it’s focus on both the built environment and the arts, The Clapton ArtsTrust (CAT) aims to provide some cohesion to the various current campaigns and projects,and future ones, that are happening in Clapton in these fields.
The Trust aims to regenerate local historic buildings to supply studio space to artists andan education program of workshops and classes taken by professional working artistsand musicians, whilst at the same time preserving the building and a piece of Clapton’sarchitectural heritage. The idea is to create a sustainable, self-generating income for the trust to enable other projects and exhibitions as well. The photographer, Tom Hunterand the London Assembly Member for North East London, Jennette Arnold, are Patrons ofthe trust.
The particular campaigns currently covered are The Tram Shed (One of the last remaining Victorian tram depots, just north of the Lea Bridge roundabout), The Clapton Cinematograph(A Victorian Cinema, more recently used as a night club, just south of same roundabout) andthe Old School Room (off the Leabridge Road – due to be converted into a River HeritageMuseum). See below for further details of each campaign or project.
Contact: David White
Phone: 0208 806 3731 / 0207 119 3773 | Mobile: 07794 195 444 | email: david [at] davidwhitedesign.co.uk