Monday, October 08, 2012

Objection to the planning application for the Catford Bridge Tavern

The view from the bus stop outside the Catford Bridge Tavern, taken when it was The Copperfield, one of the areas grimmest pubs.

This is the text of my objection to the planning application for the Catford Bridge Tavern site. Feel free to borrow any or all of it in your own objection letters (with thanks to Levin Wheller and Brockley Central for some of the ideas in my letter)

I am writing to note my objection to planning application DC/12/81142/X. I am resident in Catford (address given).

I object to the application for the following reasons:

1. The Catford Bridge Tavern has recently been transformed from a run down, unpleasant pub to a vibrant, responsibly run location which has been hugely successful since it reopened. This transformation has been postive and it sends entirely the wrong impression to businesses seeking to invest in and improve the local area (the centre of Catford) that this new, thriving business should be replaced by housing. The company currently running the pub, Antic Ltd, has invested heavily in pubs in the borough and each has had a positive impact on the area in which it has been located. The Catford Bridge Tavern is a fine example of this. The council should support companies such as this who are willing to invest in the borough.

2. The type of flats that could be built on the site would be unpleasant to live in given the noise from the main road, the number of bus routes and the high frequency of trains using Catford Bridge Station next door.

3. There are a number of vacant shops already in parts of central Catford. In the current economic climate I would anticipate only large chains of supermarkets expanding into new properties. The local area is already well served by existing shops and supermarkets. Indeed, it runs counter to the council's plans for Catford to locate a retail development on the site of the Catford Bridge Tavern. In fact, locating retail here would be damaging to local retail as it would compete with what exists/is planned and the lack of a good pub would cause fewer people to visit Catford in the first place.

The local community has benefitted and will continue to benefit more from a well run, family-friendly pub than from more housing and retail space.

Many thanks for your time in noting my objections. I do believe the reopening of the Catford Bridge Tavern under new management has had a very positive impact on the centre of Catford and this sort of investment in the local area should not be undermined simply to build more housing which offer limited benefits to the overall community.