Croydon events and news at 12 July

Contents: Events in South Norwood & Ruskin House; Beddington Incinerator Fire; Saffron Tower empty flat;  Coppice Yard development; Fairfield Halls; Park Hill Park project; campaign for directly elected Mayor; Contacts in Council Environmental Services; Update on the Licensed Landlord Scheme

Saturdays. Clocktower Market South Norwood to 5 October

South Nrwood Market

https://www.facebook.com/clocktowerSNorwood

Saturday 20 July. 4pm. Celebrate 50 year anniversary of the moon landing in South Norwood

Buzz and Neil disembark Apollo 11 to find moon people dancing wildly to Hawkwind and Pink Floyd…… come in spaced out gear – set the controls for the heart of the sun.

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https://southnorwoodtouristboard.com

Saturday 20 July. 7-11pm. Ruskin House Pizza & Prosecco evening

Live soft jazz. £7 entry includes glass of prosecco plus home-made pizza. Cocktails & deserts as well as usual bar. Guest of honour Sarah Jones MP. Tickets from bar or on the door or from

https://www.eventbrite.com/e/pizza-prosecco-at-ruskin-house-tickets-62939238958

In aid of Ruskin’s renovated Georgina King Lewis meeting and library room.

Ruskin House. Coombe Rd

Wednesday 24 July. 7pm. #StandWith Corbyn Unite to End Austerity Tour

Speakers inc: Liam Young, Murad Qureshi (former London Assembly), Dorinda Duncan,  Cllr Sakhina Sheikh (Lewisham), Bell Riberio-Addy (Streatham Labour Left), Anastasia Palikeras (Greenwich activist) & Matt Willgress (Labour Assembly Against Austerity)

Ruskin House, Coombe Rd

Tickets: http://bit.ly/croydonstandswithcorbyn

Thursday 25 July, 1-5pm. South London Downs Discovery Day 

Celebration of start of South Downs National Nature Reserve

Farthing Downs, Ditches Lane, Coulsdon CR5 1DA

https://www.yourlocalguardian.co.uk/news/17765258.london-s-third-nature-reserve-opened-croydon

Beddington Lane Incinerator on fire

On Thursday Beddington Lane incinerator went up in smoke with an enormous plume of smoke across parts of Croydon. The operator Viridor thinks it may have been caused by  lithium ion batteries.

https://www.mylondon.news/news/south-london-news/croydon-fire-live-updates-black-16566938

https://www.mylondon.news/news/south-london-news/croydon-fire-viridor-reveals-likely-16567738

No one wants to live at top of Saffron Tower

https://www.mylondon.news/news/south-london-news/croydon-flats-skyscraper-saffron-lansdowne-16555040

Is Coppice Yard a model for future housing developments in Croydon?

Spending at least two hours a week outside in a place with natural planting has a positive impact on health and wellbeing and is, according to new research by University of Exeter Medical School, the key to happiness. The new Coppice Yard development appears to be making it easier for residents to adopt a healthier green lifestyle.

https://www.homesandproperty.co.uk/property-news/buying/new-homes/croydon-newbuild-flats-apartments-with-natural-planting-roof-gardens-and-outdoor-space-promote-a131811.html

Fairfield Halls aspire to be Croydon’s South Bank

https://www.thestage.co.uk/news/2019/fairfield-halls-relaunches-as-southbank-centre-for-croydon

Raising money to revitalise Park Hill’s  Victorian Walled Garden

For further details and to pledge money please visit:

https://www.spacehive.com/walledgardenheartofthewellbeinghub

Unite Retired Members reject Chris Philp’s Campaign for Referendum for Directly Elected Mayor

Croydon Unite Retired Members trade union branch has agreed to reject Conservative MP for Croydon South Chris Philp’s  campaign for a referendum for Croydon to have a directly elected Mayor. The branch supports the policy of the Croydon Trades Union Council and the Croydon Assembly for a reform of the Croydon governance system by the replacement of the executive leader and Cabinet model and return to a more democratic and accountable system of the previous governance system based on annual election of the Leader and the Cabinet members.

A meeting attended by about 40 people mainly from Residents Associations in South Croydon to set up a referendum petition campaign was held on Wednesday 10 July. Among those present were Labour Councillor Andrew Pelling and three members who said they were members of Croydon South Labour Party. A Lib Dem spoke against. The majority voted to support the campaign even when challenged as to needing to know the pros and cons of having a directly elected Mayor being making their minds up. Residents Associations which jealously protect their non-party political nature are likely to refuse to back what is clearly a party political campaign.
Unite Retired Members oppose latest threat to green spaces

In line with its opposition to the Brick by Brick scheme to be built on the green space next to Ruskin House, Croydon Unite Retired members branch agreed to continue to support the need to protect neighbourhood green spaces from building development. It I therefore calling on Croydon Council to withdraw from the recent list of potential housing sites, submitted to the Mayor of London and reportedly handed to Brick by Brick, any green space such as that of the corner of Covington and Crescent Ways in Norbury Park Ward.

Contacts in Council Environmental Services

Waste, Recycling and Street Cleansing –  danielle.emery@croydon.gov.uk

Trees and Woodlands – mathew.burnell@croydon.gov.uk

Grounds Maintenance – owen.giddings@croydon.gov.uk

Environmental Response Team/Parks Events – mark.digiorgio@croydon.gov.uk

Head of Environmental Services, Tom Lawrence – Tom.Lawrence@croydon.gov.uk

Environmental Services, Place Department, Public Realm Building, Stubbs Mead Depot, Factory Lane, Croydon, CR0 3RL

Update on the Licensed Landlord Scheme

Croydon Council has got to decide how to renew its Landlord  Licencing scheme which is due to end in September next year. This time it will require approval from the Government. On 18 June the Council held its Landlord Forum but did not discuss the issue in detail. The landlords present were told that they would not be consulted until the formal consultation stage.

The total number of applications received to the end of March has been  35,014 (paid), from a total of 17,000 landlords. New applications are running between 250 and 300 a month. Since September 2015 there have been 12,029 inspections (about 3,400pa or 68 per week for 50 weeks).

There have been 232 Enforcement Notices, Prohibition Orders  issued since April 2018, and 16  Financial Penalty notices.

Advice to landlords

The Government has published advice booklets: How to Rent, How to Buy and How to Sell.

Landlords cannot charge tenants for gardening or cleaning.

There are now grants available to improve energy efficiency for properties with tenants on benefits, including central heating. Local Authority flexible eligibility but usually for low income households: 1 person on £19,250, 2 people on £28,750, 3 people on £38,250 or 4 people on £47,750. www.heat.london

Homelessness and evictions

The Council’s Homelessness Prevention Manager Susan O’Neil told the meeting that “The largest cause of homelessness is S21 no fault evictions”. – “We help tenants find faults with S21 notices to buy time for the tenant”89% of LL don’t serve prescribed info correctly

Rent Levels

Annette Lewis, Rent Officer from the Regional Valuation Office South reported that the average rent in Croydon is £550pcm

Action on Empty Properties

The  Croydon Empty Property Team reported that it deal with properties that have been empty for 6+ months and where the know the owner  it can act as a conduit with potential purchasers. It has a £1m empty property grant fund and £200K of loans available for 2+ bedrooms. Grants of up to £25K each and loans up to £40K each (loans at 1% over BoE base and repaid in 2 years). Must commit to renting to the Council for tenants on the housing waiting list. They have a 24 hour helpline.
https://www.croydon.gov.uk/privatehousing/emptyproperty

Information from: https://www.property118.com/croydon-landlord-forum-notes

About seancreighton1947

Since moving to Norbury in July 2011 I have been active on local economy, housing and environment issues with Croydon TUC and Croydon Assembly. I am a member of the Love Norbury Residents Associations Planning & Transport Committees, and Chair of Nobury Community Land Trust. I write for Croydon Citizen at http://thecroydoncitizen.com. I co-ordinate the Samuel Coleridge-Taylor and Croydon Radical History Networks and edit the North East Popular Politics database. History Project.. I give history talks and lead history walks. I retired in 2012 having worked in the community/voluntary sector and on heritage projects. My history interests include labour movement, mutuality, Black British, slavery & abolition, Edwardian roller skating and the social and political use of music and song. I have a particular interest in the histories of Battersea and Wandsworth, Croydon and Lambeth. I have a publishing imprint History & Social Action Publications.
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