News

Open Letter

Rt Hon. Robert Jenrick MP
Secretary of State for Housing, Communities, and Local Government
2 Marsham St
Westminster
London SW1P 4DF

28th May 2020

RE: An open letter calling for the government to extend the ‘Everyone In’ policy

Dear Secretary of State,

This letter has been written by local community-led groups and charities across England. We have provided essential services throughout the pandemic, working closely with people who are homeless both within the emergency provision and with those left on the streets or in inadequate accommodation. We are deeply concerned about the Government’s reported decision to end the ‘Everyone In’ policy and the continued provision for homeless people.1

We are also very concerned about the risks associated with vastly reduced winter provision and about the significant population – in particular those with No Recourse to Public Funds – that remain substantially at risk during the pandemic despite the huge effort made by all to accommodate people. 

We note your announcement of 24 May of measures to support those rough sleepers currently accommodated to move on to sustainable, long-term housing.2 While the language used shows positive ambition, much of your statement recycles previously announced pre-COVID-19 lockdown pledges, such as 6,000 new housing units.3 In addition, the majority of the funding announced was already announced at budget, albeit accelerated. This announcement did not clarify whether the Everyone In policy was actually coming to an end or not. It did not confirm if the new units would be available for use by those who have not been able to access the current available provisions, thus remaining street homeless. The announcement also did not address the question of support for people with No Recourse to Public Funds. Finally, it made no mention of people who will become homeless in the future and how they might be accommodated.

What is needed is a far more substantial allocation of funding to local authorities, with a guarantee that central government will fund all shortfalls which are leaving rough sleepers on the streets, and urgently assist local authorities in acquiring sufficient housing for all.

This need for the Government to urgently provide substantial funds on a long-term basis, as well as clarify and amend its instructions and guidance to Local Authorities, is crucial. On 26th March, the Homelessness Minister, Luke Hall MP, issued his directive to local authorities to ‘bring everyone in’ during the ongoing coronavirus crisis.4 Specifically, his directive stated that ‘it is imperative that rough sleepers and other vulnerable homeless persons are supported into appropriate accommodation by 29th March’. Although councils have continued their efforts to meet the Minister’s directive, it has never been met in full: many people continue to sleep on the streets or have become newly street homeless.

Nonetheless, the principle of ‘Everyone In’ was, and remains, correct. Homeless members of society need to be able to access secure and safe accommodation during the pandemic, both for their own health and safety and for our wider public safety but this principle should reach far beyond public health measures. It is the principle of a fair society.

We therefore urge that, if the goal of the government is to end rough sleeping then the  Everyone In policy must be extended so that all people experiencing homelessness are able to access safe and secure accommodation for the entirety of the COVID-19 pandemic and beyond.

This provision should include funding and support for the sector to problem solve winter provision. Pre-pandemic, the vast majority of people sleeping rough have been accommodated through the winter shelter network from November – March each year. We are now facing the risk of a humanitarian disaster as the shared winter shelter spaces commonly used will not meet public health requirements.

This stark reality demonstrates that the impact of COVID-19 on our homeless population reaches far beyond the months of lockdown. In this crisis, a failure to protect the most vulnerable constitutes a failure to protect us all. With shelters being closed, the winding down of the ‘Everyone In’ scheme with no robust alternative in place would mean our buses, our A&E waiting rooms, and our high streets becoming crowded with those who have nowhere else to go. This risks a spike in infections, posing a grave danger to the health of rough sleepers, and all other members of our society. A long-term commitment is essential to save lives.

To this end, sufficient funding should be provided to Local Authorities immediately.5 Neither the £3.2 billion the Government released to Local Authorities for their overall Covid-19 response, nor the £3.2 million dedicated to provisions for rough sleeping, nor the allocated funds mentioned in your most recent statement are sufficient for municipal governments to do the urgent work of protecting residents from the ongoing crisis at hand.6 It is crucial that additional funds, beyond the budget, be released for Local Authorities to procure further accommodation stock, to finance long-term welfare support, and to pay for the training and the recruitment of homelessness outreach workers and charity staff.  

It is also of critical importance that the Government clarify that those without regularised immigration status will not be removed as a result of taking up temporary accommodation, and that data held by Local Authorities or their contractors will not be shared with the Home Office without consent. The No Recourse to Public Funds condition should also be removed so that everyone can access housing support, regardless of immigration status. Funding should be allocated towards supporting homeless people with NRPF, who make up a large percentage of all rough sleepers.7

In addition to funding, and following the MHCLG’s Inquiry into the impact of coronavirus on homelessness, rough sleepers, and the private rented sector, we echo the Committee’s recommendation that the Government must also provide guidance clarifying councils’ use of discretion in lifting the No Recourse to Public Funds condition, so that homeless people can access vital accommodation support.8 No one should be punished for trying to protect their own safety and the safety of the wider public, particularly as the mechanisms of the current immigration regime directly contravenes leading scientific recommendations for an effective Coronavirus response.9

Local Authorities must have the funding, legal authorisation, and government guidance needed to allow them fulfil the “in for good” principle: the understanding that, once service users initially engage with homelessness services, they will be guaranteed the long-term housing support needed to avoid returning to the streets. To this end, the Everyone In policy should not be abandoned, but instead, extended.

Yours sincerely,

Haringey Migrant Support Centre, London
Museum of Homelessness, national
The Rt. Rev the Lord Bishop of Salisbury
Albert Kennedy Trust, national
The Big Issue Foundation, national
Emmaus UK, national
London Renters Union, London
The Simon Community, London
Oxford Homeless Project, Oxford
Street Treats, Manchester
West Yorkshire Destitute Asylum Network, Leeds
Sanctus St Mark’s, Stoke on Trent
Streets Kitchen, national
Solidarity Shelters, national
The Outside Project, London
Homeless Support Project, Manchester
The Pavement magazine
Voices in Exile, Brighton
Hope Housing, Bradford
Sussex Homeless Support & Brighton and Hove Housing Coalition, Brighton
Denis Tully, CEO, Emmanuel House, Nottingham
Institute of our Lady of Mercy, Leeds
Society of St James, Southampton
Lewisham Refugee and Migrant Network, London
Northampton Hope Centre
Union Chapel, London
Street Storage, London
With One Voice, International
Barnsley Rough Sleeper Project, Barnsley
Jon Beech, Director, Leeds Asylum Seekers’ Support Network
The Margins Project, London
Kalayaan, London
The Tricky Period, London
Positive Action for Refugees, Leeds
Project 17, London
No Accommodation Network, national
The Solace Community, Wolverhampton
Thousand 4 1000, Brighton
Greenwich Winter Night Shelter, London
Rev David Britton, Forest Churches Emergency Night Shelter, London
The Bromley Homeless Shelter, London
London Jesus Centre, London
Labour Homelessness Campaign
ACORN, national
Paper Cup Project, Liverpool
The Night Shelter, Coventry
The Robes Project, London
Surviving the Streets, Hastings
Migrant English Project, Brighton
Birmingham Community Hosting Network, Birmingham
Renewed Hope Trust, Surrey
Metro, London
Public Interest Law Centre, London
Quaker Homeless Action
St Werburghs Medical Practice for the Homeless, Chester
Campbell Hall Homeless Drop In, Boughton, Chester
Homeless Support Project, Manchester
Neighbourhood Food Larder, Warrington, St Helen’s and Leigh
Myriad Foundation, Manchester
Lola’s Homeless, Newham, London
Feed Manchester, Manchester
Spotlight Outreach, Manchester
Chester Cathedral
The Rt Revd Christopher Chessun, Bishop of Southwark
The Very Revd Andrew Nunn, Dean of Southwark
The Venerable Alastair Cutting, Archdeacon of Lewisham and Greenwich
Ruth Martin, Diocesan Secretary of the Diocese of Southwark
Pepys Community Forum, London

To download a pdf copy of the letter click here (94.4kB).


Forty Shillings – Invitation – Convoys Wharf

Forty Shillings, are a new PR Company recently engaged (late 2019) by the Convoys Wharf developer, Convoys Properties Limited.

Forty Shillings will be holding drop-in events on the Convoys Wharf project in the coming weeks to provide a general update on the project and an opportunity for local residents to meet the team.

The events will take place on:

• Saturday, 29th February, 10am-2pm

2000 Community Action Centre, 199-201 Grove St, SE8 3PG

• Tuesday, 3rd March, 4pm-8pm

2000 Community Action Centre, 199-201 Grove St, SE8 3PG

Please find attached a flyer that we have circulated to almost 6000 households and businesses around the site inviting them to the drop-in events.

We hope you can join us – please let us know if you have any questions in the meantime.


The Albany are holding a FREE PARTY

Sunday 23rd February in response to asking the people of Deptford what they would like:
 
“Just to give you an update we have an answer and it seems the people of Deptford want: an uplifting party with music and food and art.

 
So we are organising one.
 
When? Sunday 23rd February 2020
 
What Time? 11.00 am – 10.00 pm
 
Where? The Albany,  Douglas Way, Deptford, London SE8 4AG
 
 
IT’S ALL FREE

Responses to DNA Neighbourhood Plan

Please check out the responses to DNA Neighbourhood Plan below.

Thank you for your consultation request on the above dated and received by Natural England on 27th October, 2019.

Natural England is a non-departmental public body. Our statutory purpose is to ensure that the natural environment is conserved, enhanced, and managed for the benefit read more >

Thank you for consulting us on the above. We would like to offer the following advice with respect to  read more >

Thank you for consulting the Mayor of London on the Pre-Submission (Regulation 14) version of the Deptford Neighbourhood Plan read more >


Brookmill Park Pub Talks

Speakers volunteer their time. Proceeds go towards park activities. Talks are audio-recorded for those unable to access the upstairs room at the pub.

When & What Time? Sunday Evenings 6.45 pm. Click here for dates and topics.

Where? The Brookmill pub, 65 Cranbrook Road, London SE8 4EJ

Transport: Deptford Bridge/Elverson Road DLR; 225/47 bus to Lewisham Way.


Deptford Neighbourhood Action Next AGM

Our AGM has been arranged for Monday 17th February. Please download the agenda here.

It will take place at Pepys Resource Centre, Deptford Strand, SE8 3BA 6-8pm.

Lee Waller from The Timberyard Development will be attending to talk about Plot 5 on this development site. This is a good opportunity to put any questions and comments to Lendlease about this Development.

Light refreshments will be provided and there will be copies of our Draft Neighbourhood Plan on display. 

We would welcome new and additional Committee members.

If you would be interested in being on the DNA Committee please send us an email stating which position you would like to stand for and what experience you would bring to this role.

  • Chair
  • Vice-Chair
  • Treasurer
  • Coordinator
  • Working Group member:
    • Housing; Health and Well-being
    • Heritage
    • Green & Open Spaces
    • Local Economy
    • Transport

We look forward to seeing you there.  All reports will be given out at the AGM and sent out to members who were not able to attend afterwards.

We would be very grateful if you could let us have your views by reviewing the Draft Neighbourhood Plan. The full version of the plan can be found here, and the summary booklet is attached for ease of reference, and then complete this short online survey. Click here to go to the survey.

Kind regards,

DNA


A Question for the People of Deptford

Nigel Barrett, Louise Mari and the Deptford Albany and we need your ideas!

Nigel and Louise want to make something for the community that brings people together – what would you make or do if it was you?

For 5 weeks from 20 January to 21 February Nigel and Louise will be hitting the streets of Deptford to get your views, to find out what’s important to you, what you enjoy doing and to find people who want to help us make it happen. You can just tell them your ideas or you can help them to organise it.

It can be a community event, artwork, experience, show, celebration, anything you want – that can take place at the Albany – what do you want it to be?

How do you think Nigel and Louise should decide which idea to do from all the brilliant suggestions? All suggestions welcome.

All the best Nigel Barrett, Louise Mari and the Albany

Get in touch:

Nigel and Louise will be spending time in cafés, pubs, clubs, libraries and fire stations. You can chat to them if you see them or ask them to come to your work, group or community centre.

 Nigel Louise want to hear from people from all ages and backgrounds.

Phone 07448 855 970

Email louise@nigelandlouise.com

Post or drop-in a letter or note FAO Nigel and Louise at the Albany box office

Online you can contribute ideas via our Facebook group.


Opportunity for Local Artists at the Timberyard Deptford (formerly known as Victoria Wharves)

Lendlease are the developers of
The Timberyards, Deptford.Lendlease Logo This land was formerly known as Victoria Wharves, bounded by Grove, Dragoon and Evelyn Streets, together with Oxestalls Road, London, SE8. Lendlease would like to commission several pieces of artwork for 4 lobbies in the residential development.

For more information regarding the brief, proposal requirements, available budget and timeline, click here.

Contact: Zoe.Koskinas@lendlease.com / malcolmpepysforum@gmail.com

At the meeting on Wednesday 13th December, an extension of 7 days has been agreed on the deadline. It is now Monday 2nd December 2019.


We’re on the Map!

Deptford Plan gets a mention, under Latest Map and List on the Neighbourhood Planners website:

“Deptford is one recent area to see its plan go out to consultation. It includes a design code seeking to govern development in the key area of Convoys Wharf. Our updated MAP and LIST provides the latest picture. The extract shows the two new made plans at the heart of London.”


Scott House Objection

RE: DC/19/113332 – proposal to build up to 27 storey tower behind a ‘facade’ of Scott House.

DNA, as the local designated Neighbourhood Forum are writing to object to this current proposal on several grounds:

  1. Richard Katona a local resident’s view:”Death-masking” is just a pejorative term for “facadism”. There’s nothing especially wrong with “facadism” itself. The Woods’ 18th Century architecture in Bath was built upon facadist principles and that city is today a World Heritage Site. A lot of nineteenth century commercial buildings were self-consciously constructed as facades that could be easily adapted to the needs of subsequent owners; and that’s as much a part of those buildings’ histories as are the facades themselves.However, a particular instance of facadism may well be inappropriate and aesthetically unacceptable. In my view, facadism is wrong when it becomes a form of deception, which I suspect is what is planned for the Scott building. To be valid, I believe that any adaptation has to pay aesthetic homage, in some way,  to the original facade.
  2. DNA were funded by Locality to have a Character and Heritage Report carried out for the Neighbourhood Plan and AECOM recommended that Scott House becomes a listed building.  The origins of Scott House were that it was a manufacturer of decorated tin boxes providing over 800 jobs to people in the local area (Scott House. A.G Scott and Co Ltd): https://www.gracesguide.co.uk/A._G._Scott_and_CoEstablished in 1890.It is a very important ‘heritage’ building within the Pepys Estate and to build a horrible 27 storey high tower behind it does not lend itself to a sensitive conversion appropriate to the History of the Royal Dockyard and the old history of Deptford – too much of which has already been lost through demolition and so called ‘regeneration’.  This process of ‘death-masking’ heritage buildings needs to be rejected both by the planning department and the Councillors.
  3. This site is situated on the corner of Oxstalls Road at the junction with Grove Street, on the corner of The Timberyard – some 1,300 apartments, which together with the proposed 3,500 apartments on convoys wharf and the developments such as Neptune Wharf etc on Plough way would only serve to further increase the densification of this Area to a point that the current infrastructure can’t cope – health services, schools, public transport, parking, etc are all under considerable strain and this could be ‘ the final straw that breaks the camel’s back.’
  4. DNA supports all the objections made by Malcolm Cadman of Pepys Community Forum/Voice4Deptford in relation to this applicaton.
  5. This application goes against the policies for health and well-being, housing and heritage in the emerging Neighbourhood Plan which is nearing Regulation 14.

Please confirm that all of DNA’s objections to the Scott House proposal have been recorded in the objections for the planning application when it comes before the Council and please send details of the Planning Meeting to me at DNA so that we can be one of the objectors at the Meeting.

Yours sincerely,

Andrea Carey Fuller, DNA Coordinator
tel: 07917 162950


Deptford Neighbourhood Action Draft Neighbourhood Plan Consultation and Online Survey

Welcome to the Draft Deptford Neighbourhood Action (DNA) Neighbourhood Forum Plan and online survey.

DNA became a Designated Neighbourhood Forum in February 2016, and since that time we have been seeking your views on what should be included within the Deptford Neighbourhood Plan (NPlan).

Along the way we have been taking your comments, ideas, and opinions into helping to creating it.

We have held public meetings, attended other community group events and meetings, Local Assembly meetings and have had specialist work carried out by consultants to:

  • enable local people to affect the design of Convoys Wharf, called a Design Code:
  • come up with small social housing in-fill site ideas
  • write up a Character and Heritage survey to persuade the Council to list important heritage within the DNA NPlan Area.

Following from our detailed work with five issue based groups:

  1. Housing
  2. Health & Wellbeing
  3. Local Economy
  4. Green and Open Spaces, Heritage
  5. Additional work on making Deptford a Child Friendly Neighbourhood, including input from Lewisham Council’s Planning team.

We have now published the Pre-Submission DNA Neighbourhood Plan.

Once again, we are seeking your views, at this opportunity to influence the Plan. We need your support for the draft policies and project ideas to ensure that as this will be a Neighbourhood Plan that will run for 15 years, that it contains the best policies that there can be for the benefit of Deptford.

We would be very grateful if you could let us have your views by reviewing the Draft Neighbourhood Plan. The full version of the plan can be found here, and the summary booklet (for ease of reference), can be found here, and then complete this short online survey. Click here to go to the survey.

The full DNA Draft Neighbourhood Plan can be reviewed until Wednesday 18th December 2019 at Pepys Resource Centre, Old Library, Deptford Strand, London, SE8 3BA between the hours of 10.00 am – 3.00 pm on Mondays and Wednesdays. There is also another copy of the full NPlan which can be viewed at the Deptford Energy Cafe, Energy Advice Desk, at Deptford Lounge, 9 Giffin Street, Deptford, London SE8 4RJ, every Monday from 10.00 am – 4.00 pm, where you will be assisted to complete the survey on-line.

An exhibition of the Neighbourhood Plan will be at the Local Assembly Meetings coming up this Autumn:

On Tuesday 29th October at the Bear Church, Frankham Street, SE8 4RN from 7pm – 9pm

On Tuesday 12th November at the Leander Community Centre, Ship Street, London SE8 4DH from 7pm – 9pm

On Tuesday 26th November at the Lewington Community Centre, 9 Eugenia Road, Rotherhithe, London SE16 2RU from 12 noon – 2.00 pm

Yours faithfully,
Joyce Jacca, Chair and the DNA Steering Group


Next DNA Public Meeting  – Public Launch of the Draft Plan

When? Thursday 17th October 2019.

What Time? 7.00 pm to 9.00 pm

Where? 2000 Community Action Centre, 199-201 Grove Steet, London SE8 3PG.

Download the flyer for the Open Meeting of the Launch of the DNA Neighbourhood Plan here (85kB).

Download the Proposals Map here (57kB).


Resident Engagement on New Homes – Scrutiny Public Workshop

Information on an event & online consultation for residents

Lewisham Council’s Housing Select Committee is carrying out a scrutiny review of resident engagement in housing development – the way that local people are informed and involved in the process when new homes are built in their area. 

The review will be looking into how the Council and its partners currently engage with communities around the development of new homes and what has been learned from past engagement exercises.

As part of the review the committee is organising a public workshop with Tenant and Residents’ Associations (TRAs) and other interested residents in the Deptford area, to be held on:

Thursday 3 October 2019, 7.00pm

2000 Community Action Centre, Grove Street, SE8 3PG

This meeting is open to residents and community groups living within the Deptford area. The following TRAs and their members may be particularly interested in attending:

  • Argosy and Lanyard

  • Bence House

  • Colonnade and Terrace

  • Crossfield

  • Daubeney Tower

  • Eddystone Tower

  • Evelyn

  • Hazelwood and Pomona

  • Tanners Hill

This workshop is supported by Lewisham Tenant’s Fund.

If you’re interested in attending please contact John Bardens by phone: 0208 314 9976 or email:john.bardens@lewisham.gov.uk

If you’re unable to attend, you can still have your say by submitting your views online by Friday 25 October 2019.

For further information about the review please see the scoping paper and a presentation from the first evidence session.


Community Energy Fund

There is a new funding opportunity for community groups & schools who want to make their buildings more energy efficient: called the Community Energy Fund

The fund will cover thing like solar energy & more energy efficient lighting as well as fund feasibility studies if you are unsure of the right product to bid for.

The first round of funding opened on 16th September 2019, just click on this here for more information.


Lewisham Neighbourhood Community Infrastructure Levy (NCIL) Fund Launched

The Lewisham Neighbourhood Community Infrastructure Levy (NCIL) fund has been launched with the priority setting stage remaining open until the 21st Oct 2019. 

This is an opportunity for the Neighbourhood Forums without a made plan to help decide what the priorities are in their ward that the NCIL funding should go towards.  Any priorities that you have for projects within your draft plans can be registered on your wards commonplace website which is linked below.  

You can find out more information on the NCIL fund by following the links below and if you have any further questions please do not hesitate to contact Chris Fraser, Lewisham Planning Policy Officer. or call him on 020 8314 9252.

Commonplace and where to register your priorities click here.

Click here for Lewisham website.


Bear Church Building Project

The Bear Church
The Shaftesbury Centre
Frankham St
London
SE8 4RN

The Bear Church occupies a 1950’s time expired building and replace it with a building with up to 8 storeys with affordable accommodation in the upper 6 storeys. They need to purchase the land from Livability who own the land and the project will estimated at between £8-9m and be completed by January 2022. Read More.


Deptford First

 

 

Community Chest Fund Launch & Fundraiser

Dear Friends,

On Thursday 5th September Deptford First will officially launch our brand-new Community Chest Fund at Deptford Town Hall.

Cuts to local government funding have taken a massive toll on our community, placing many people in financial hardship. Deptford First hopes to alleviate some of that hardship by working with our partner organisations to provide small grants to those who cannot access help elsewhere.

Join us to hear from our trustees, our partners and some of the people we have already helped. If that’s not enough to tempt you along, there will also be food and drink (as well as the obligatory raffle!) and a chance to network with other local organisations.

Please register via our Eventbrite page: www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/deptford-first-community-chest-fund-launch-tickets

We are asking attendees for a small donation of £2 per person (or more if you would like) towards the Community Chest Fund.

We have tried to invite as many local organisations as possible, but please feel free to share this with your networks.

I hope to see you there.

Best wishes,

Vicky Foxcroft

Chair of Deptford First & MP for Lewisham Deptford

Web: www.deptfordfirst.org.uk

When? Thursday 5th September 2019 at 17.30

Where? Deptford Town Hall Council Chamber, Goldsmiths, New Cross Road, London SE14 6NW


REAL CHANGE – FREE EVENT

In August The Midi Music Company are launching REAL TALK, a series of FREE talks, consisting of guest speakers, local experts, and a musical performance by a Midi Music Company artist. Two hours prior to the talks there will be confidential drop-in 1:1 advice sessions for young people.

When? Wednesdays: 14th, 21st and 28th August 2019

What Time? 4 pm – 6 pm: Drop-in 1:1 sessions. 6 pm – 8 pm: REAL TALK

Where? The Midi Music Company, 77 Watson’s Street, Deptford SE8 4AU

Download the poster here.


Convoys Wharf Latest Developer Consultation Plot 15

The proposed plan is for 123 affordable homes situated between Decca Street and New King Street. Convoys Wharf latest developer consultation plot 15


Convoys Wharf – Make Sure You Get Your Voice Heard

Voice4Deptford have undertaken immense work to produce a summary of people’s comments on Plot 08 the first proposed apartment building on Convoys Wharf. They have made it easy for people to make objections to this first phase building which Hutchinson Whampoa the owners propose to have:

  • No social housing
  • A podium garden for residents only
  • Block the site line for the local community from Deptford High Street to the River.
  • Plot 22 (the jetty) is a proposed marketing suite – accessible by river for rich clients!

For more information on the background of the proposals, please visit:

How to object: voice4deptford.org

Engage with ongoing planning applications in Lewisham: v4dcomments.org

Voice4Deptford need people to complete comments for:


Sian Berry, GLA Housing Chair visits Old Tidemill Wildlife Garden & Reginald House

Sian Berry, Co-Leader of the Green Party of England and Wales, calls for plans to go back to the drawing board on the Old Tidemill School site – something DNA has been trying to get the Council to do since 2015 in order to save the beautiful Old Tidemill Wildlife Garden and the 16 social homes next to it 2-30A Reginald Road (known as Reginald House). Read more