Public Transport Liaison Committee First Meeting – more trains for ‘cinderella line’?

Lewisham Council’s new Public Transport Liaison Committee met for the first time on Wednesday, 5th October in the Mayor’s meeting room at Lewisham Town Hall.

The new Public Transport Liaison Committee was set up as a forum for Councillors, civic societies and the public to come together with bus, train and public transport operators across the London Borough of Lewisham to discuss improvements and other issues. The proposals were agreed at the Council’s AGM on 30th March, the papers are here.

Councillor Alan Hall, who led the proposals for the new Committee through Lewisham Council said: “The meeting has heard of possible improvements to the Catford Loop line trains services, dubbed the Cinderella Line. Two trains per hour in London, a world city is not good enough. I hope that Thameslink will seriously consider increasing their frequency to four trains per hour  and I welcome South Eastern’s trains suggestion that they maybe able to stop some fast Victoria trains along the Catford loop line at peak times. This is a real break through.”

He went on to say: “The meeting discussed various train and bus issues that matter to Lewisham residents and this first meeting has been very worthwhile.”

The agenda and papers for the meeting are here

The meeting heard that Thameslink are considering increasing their frequency on the Catford Loop Line – serving Beckenham Hill, Bellingham, Catford and Crofton Park stations and South Eastern trains are looking at stopping some fast through trains on Victoria and Kent lines.

Lewisham Councillors have been campaigning for more trains on the Catford Loop line see ‘Cinderella Line – Two trains per hour not enough’ 29th March 2016

Cllr Alan Hall asked the formal question on the Catford Loop Line here
Thamselink timetable consultation until 8th December 2016 is here

Millwall FC and New Bermondsey CPO Halted pending ‘investigation’

The reconsideration of the New Bermondsey Compulsory Purchase Order around Millwall Football Club by Lewisham Council was suddenly delayed pending “an investigation” after a new document was discovered. The hearing expected at Lewisham Town Hall this evening – 28th September – was halted by the new revelations. At the meeting scrutiny Chair Councillor Alan Hall said that the referral contained concerns about damage to the Council’s reputation and this seems very prescient now.

Councillor Alan Hall said: “The Compulsory Purchase Order decision would have been in place now if scrutiny Councillors had not referred this matter back to the Cabinet. The discovery of a new document that is serious enough to halt the democratic process needs to be explained fully and no further action on the CPO can proceed until then.”

The statement issued by Lewisham Council reads:

I am writing to you about the reconsideration of the decision made on 7th September to use the Council’s CPO powers in relation to the New Bermondsey site, which is scheduled to be discussed at the meeting of Mayor and Cabinet this evening.

I am informed that Council officers yesterday received a copy of a document which is now the subject of external investigation. Depending on the outcome of that investigation, the document may be referred to other authorities. In reconsidering this matter, the Council needs to be satisfied as to the veracity or otherwise of the document, and any potential impact it may have. Because of the ongoing investigation it is not possible to complete the reconsideration of the decision made on 7th September this evening. Therefore it is not anticipated that there will be any submissions made to the Mayor and Cabinet this evening. The Mayor and Cabinet will be asked to agree that further reconsideration of the matter be adjourned to a future meeting. Notice of the meeting at which this matter will be reconsidered again will be given at the appropriate time.

 The full report to the council of the call in is here:

 Media coverage in The Guardian is here, here and here
Evening Standard report is here
South London Press is here
Newsshopper report is here

In support of WASPI day of action – Open Letter

Around 20,000 women in Lewisham born on or after 1st April 1951 are set to lose out by up to £12,000 on their pensions after the tory government moved to equalise the retirement age to 65.

 Little or no notice has been given especially when the changes were implemented faster than promised by the 2011 Pension Act.

 Lewisham Council voted unanimously to support Women Against State Pension Inequality known as WASPI and I urge your readers to do the same by writing to your local MP asking them to raise this monstrous injustice with Government Ministers and ask for proper transitional arrangements to be made.

Cllr Alan Hall
Lewisham Council

Plans for the restoration of Bellingham’s listed Fellowship Inn Submitted

The Fellowship Inn next to Bellingham railway station on Randlesdown Road is a Grade II listed building. The pub has been listed as the ‘degree of survival’ is said to be rare. Historic England has a full history and architectural appraisal here.

Phoenix Community Housing – the resident led, community housing association – owners of the building are working with the Heritage Lottery Fund to restore and enhance the facilities in the building. Phoenix Community Housing have submitted their plans to Lewisham Council.

The plans include restoration of the pub bars, community facilities, a microbrewery, cafe and possibly a cinema. You can view their plans here.



Bellingham Councillor Alan Hall said: “This is an important milestone in the restoration of the Fellowship Inn. Planning consent will make the vision for a truly community based pub and hub a step closer. This represents real regeneration of a locality. Something that I support.”



The vision for the Fellowship Inn on youtube