In November 2018 an application was received by Lambeth to demolish the existing funeral directors and beauty salon at 382a – 384 Norwood Road and erect a two to four-storey building with basement to create two commercial units and 12 residential units.
Anne Crane, Chair of NAG and Planning Sub-Committee member of Norwood Forum, has written to Lambeth Planning and whilst stating that “we welcome any development in the town centre which adds to its retail and related offer and enhances its viability and vitality” listed a set of concerns about the proposed development including in summary:
- The demolition of historical buildings connected to the cemetery opposite, that date back over 150 years. The original use of the site was as Piper's stone masons, hence the use of stone rather than brick for the main building at the rear which survives to this day but would be demolished for this application scheme. For over a century there has been an undertakers on the site.
- The value of a local funeral business. The only other undertakers in West Norwood is the Co-op at the other end of the town centre and they only operate a place to make bookings with all else being done off site. We feel that Funeral Partners are unlikely to return to the site after redevelopment offering its current service and even if they did it would be limited to just bookings with only a few jobs..
- The proposed two retail units on the ground floor frontage would appear to have insufficient room and an inadequate internal and external layout. We are concerned that neither unit will be viable and they will remain vacant, be let short term until a business can no long keep on running or as yet another discount store or charity shop.
- There will be no off street parking even for disabled people and therefore both parking and servicing of the development is likely to spill over into Bloom Grove where there is no CPZ.
- The development will not include affordable housing.
Further information on this planning application can be found by searching the reference 18/04742/FUL at Lambeth Council's planning applications portal.
We understand that this application is due to be decided by the Council in February. It’s not too late to make your views known.