East Dulwich (Mobile) Forum

Are high rise buildings in and around ED safe?

In the wake of the terrible tragic event which occurred in West London, how safe are the high rise buildings and housing estates in and around East Dulwich?

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I received a change.org missive re a petition about this Isse initiated by a Mr Tyson. He's calling for a Public Forum on the safety of high rises in Southwark
Under the London/Urban Plan, properties in East Dulwich are restricted in heights I believe this is up for renewal. Keep your eye out for planning applications as flats are being squeezed into very small spaces.

Many moons ago my friend was in a high rise flat in Kidbrooke with 3 kids, the council ruled that families with young children should not be housed above the 4th floor. There were no flats at those levels available but friend was offered a newly built town house in Thamesmead. She took it even though it was miles away from family and work.
I believe there is still in many boroughs reticence to house families with young children above around the 8th floor.
not so much due to fire risks but because in the event of a power cut mothers with small children would be somewhat marooned without lift access
trinidad Wrote:

[...] how safe are the high rise buildings [...] in and around East Dulwich?

Which ones do you have in mind?
Will those who have been against new residential buildings, especially high-rise ones, now revise their opinion, at least on a case-by-case basis? It's now more apparent than ever that there is a need for much more housing than there is at the moment. There's a dilemma, too: if you don't want it, does it mean you don't want more people to live here (either from the rest of the UK or from the rest of the world)? For the record, I would like to see mid-rise housing that is rented by the council or a housing association, and for empty spaces above offices and shops to be turned into housing as soon as is possible.
How high are the flats proposed for the Dulwich Hamlets development?
Six storeys. Here's the relevant bit of what the Council said in its submission to the Planning Appeal which set out five reasons why they would have refused the application if they had gone on to determine it:

"Height, scale and massing of the residential development

8.11 The proposed development provides 155 flats in buildings up to 6 storeys in height. The site is located in the Suburban Zone under the Southwark Core Strategy, where development is expected to reflect the local character. The Southwark Plan defined the suburban zone as one which should retain a more open character with larger gardens often associated with houses rather than flats. It is the Council’s case that the housing development does not respond positively to its local character and that the scale and arrangement of the blocks would be overbearing in views across neighbouring open spaces. If the Council had been able to determine the application, it would have refused planning permission for the following reason:-

“The proposed residential blocks, by reason of their height, scale and massing would result in an overly dominant and visually intrusive development which would be out of character with the prevailing built form of the locality. It would be overbearing when viewed from the adjacent open spaces and appear as an alien form within the local townscape. It would therefore be contrary to saved Policies 3.11 ‘Efficient Use of Land’, 3.12 ‘Quality in Design’, 3.13 ‘Urban Design’, and 3.27 ‘Other Open Space’ of the Southwark Plan (2007), Strategic Policies 11 ‘Open spaces and wildlife’ and 12 ‘Design and Conservation’ of the Core Strategy (2011) and Policies 7.4 ‘Local Character’, and 7.6 ‘Architecture’ of the London Plan (2016)”.

8.12 The Council will present evidence to demonstrate that the housing blocks do not positively contribute to the local townscape, and whilst the townhouses lining the southern edge of the block could be successful, the height, form, and singularity of the flatted blocks dominate views across Greendale and St Francis Park. Where at present the long views are dominated by trees, the new blocks would be much more prominent and give the site a highly urbanised character. Whilst in some parts of the borough this form of development would be entirely appropriate, it has not taken sufficient account of the special characteristics of the suburban location within which it would sit."
Fortunately non of the cladding type used on the Grenfell Tower has been used in Southwark.
So the specific scenario of the tragedy of Grenfell Tower and the immediate surrounding area isn't replicated here.

Risks from fire though do exist where fire doors are propped open, combustible material is left on landings. We do have this at a few locations in the SE22 area and everyone is working to remove these risks and previous sceptical residents are now more understanding of not just th risks they are placing themselves under but also neighbours.

What does help is all our blocks in my mind SE22 are lower than the tallest London Fire Brigade fire appliance reach (110'/33.5m).

Regards cllrjamesbarber@gmail.com
07900 227366
Liberal Democrat Councillor for East Dulwich Ward
Skype cllrjamesbarber
We've been told our flats are all secure (as in a fire cannot spread between flats)

But I read if you make holes in your walls (to hang a TV for instance) this can break the fire wall (don't know if it's true).
Can anyone locate the Ledbury report?
The Council's official response, but it doesn't include the actual report:
Thanks to both of you.

I would like to read the Arup structural report that post-dates the 5 July [sic] email.

It does not appear to have been published on www.arup.com.

The interviews with tenants broadcast on BBC Radio 4 today have the structural cracks wider than suggested by the Arup email.
I guess this comes into the spotlight after news reports of the Ledbury Estate close to old Kent Road being evacuated following fears of gas issues.


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