CRESSINGHAM GARDENS: LAMBETH PLAN ‘LESSONS LEARNED’ EXERCISE – BUT WILL THAT ONLY BE AFTER ESTATE HAS BEEN DEMOLISHED?
Lambeth council say they will undertake a ‘lessons learned’ exercise from their plans to demolish Cressingham Gardens estate – but only, it appears, after Cressingham has been demolished.
A recommendation in a report from the council’s overview and scrutiny committee* after the decision to demolish was “called in” by Green party Cllr Scott Ainslie says:
“That, at an appropriate time, a thorough ‘lessons learned’ exercise be undertaken in respect of Cressingham Gardens taking into account the entire process from 2012 including the judicial review judgement.”
Council officers response to this is: “Once the council knows that the project as committed by cabinet is progressing and is clear of any judicial review of the decision, then officers will begin a ‘lessons learned’ review exercise, which will take around six months to complete.”
News From Crystal Palace attended the overview and scrutiny committee meeting but should point out it has no recollection of any such suggestion being voiced at that meeting.
A second recommendation says: “That cabinet considers the recommendations of the Resident Involvement in Housing Scrutiny Commission in order to ensure best practice is followed in future consultation and engagement.”
A Lambeth Green party spokesman said: “If Labour-led Lambeth were serious about learning lessons and giving rights to tenants, they would give residents on estates like Central Hill in Crystal Palace and Cressingham Gardens in Tulse Hill a choice about whether they want their homes demolished and their communities destroyed.
“Lambeth Living was a failed experiment driven by ideology rather than the needs of residents. Lambeth Labour has clearly not learned from its mistakes, and is now embarking on yet another ideological scheme which will once again leave tenants worse off.”
RESPONSE: Officers have provided a response to the resident involvement in housing scrutiny commission and have recommended a series of activities to progress in order follow the recommendations of the commission.
(On 21 March 2016 Cabinet approved the recommendations of the report ‘Investing in better neighbourhoods and building the homes we need to house the people of Lambeth – Cressingham Gardens estate’. The report sought approval for the redevelopment of the entire Cressingham Gardens estate. On 4 April a call-in of that decision was received from Cllr Ainslie.)
RESIDENT INVOLVEMENT IN HOUSING SCRUTINY COMMISSION
In a separate item at Monday night’s meeting the cabinet also considered resident involvement in a housing scrutiny commission.
Among the recommendations:
Recommendation 31 Placing residents at the centre of the regeneration process should be the focus at all stages including consultation, design, building and contract management.
Recommendation 32 Before starting a regeneration process officers and members should research and review the history and decision-making related to the area concerned, including neighbourhood plans, and visit if necessary. This research should include reviewing lessons learned from previous projects in order that relevant learning can be applied.
Recommendation 49 Ward councillors should be used as a link to residents as they are likely to recognise the impact of regeneration on their areas. (Note the commission is an organisation set up by Lambeth council – Ed.).)
*CRESSINGHAM: “WHY WE DIDN’T RESPOND TO THE PEOPLE’S PLAN” – Lambeth’s barmiest (and most outrageous) ‘excuses’ yet – Please see our report dated May 11th