There’s a get together tonight covering Plumstead, Abbey Wood and Thamesmead with Greenwich Council. It’s part of the “Better Together” set of public meetings that the council have recently introduced.

The meetings cover various areas on a revolving list. Tonight’s covers the east of the borough. The meeting is tonight from 7 – 8:15PM and is at St Paul’s Church, Bentham Road, Thamesmead. Click here to register.

Here’s a list of questions that would be useful to see answered:

1) Will more money coming into the Council from housing and retail developments be spent in the local area instead of sent elsewhere to wealthier spots which has previously happened? Almost £50 million has come in the past five years but many areas in the east are a mess. I’ve covered before how money from developments in Abbey Wood and Plumstead saw little spent locally. With Crossrail bringing more in, retaining some to improve local areas is much needed, such as the run-down Abbey Wood estate shopping area.

This brought in £400,000 but not a penny has gone to Plumstead's streets. Greenwich Town Centre saw £54,000 from it.
This brought in £400,000 but not a penny has gone to Plumstead’s streets. Greenwich Town Centre saw £54,000 from it.

2) When will consultation start on how millions of pounds from TfL given to Greenwich Council will be spent? Lewisham Council build up project lists by having monthly meetings with the public in each ward of the borough. Could these “Better Together” meetings do the same?

3) How often will these meetings be held? It’s a welcome development but is less frequent than Lewisham’s monthly ward meetings.

4) The recent issuing of letters to building owners along Plumstead High Street telling them to maintain buildings to a decent level or face enforcement action is a great step. Some have already cleaned up which shows how low cost measures can yield immediate results. Will this be expanded to other areas, and if owners ignore requests to improve dangerous and dilapidated buildings how long until enforcement notices are served?

5) The Abbey Wood tower. No one seems to have a good word for it – even those online who are fans of tall buildings seem universally to dislike its extremely grey, drab and overbearing design. The question is what happens now and in future. Abbey Wood will see other big changes in coming years but the towns SPD (which offers a guide to development) is eight years old – time for an update? The 2009 document recommended further work on a masterplan to follow which never happened.

abbey-wood-tower-from-thamesmead

6) The bookies. An ever present problem. It’s not just the number but the behaviour of those going in. I’ve received a few reports of people being abusive and drunk, taking drinks in and bookmakers not following licensing rules. This is at Abbey Wood and Plumstead in particular.

7) Parking. It’s a bit of shambles all round. I covered recently how Greenwich Council have received about £2 million less than expected each and every year for at least four years. If they had the staff they’d surely recoup more given widespread poor parking. When will this happen? After reports of poor parking on the new £1.2 million Plumstead bus and cycle lane some wardens did visit last week but I’m already hearing of people parking back in the bus and cycle lanes throughout the day.

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8) Bus cuts. See the last post of how 180 could be diverted from Lewisham to North Greenwich and the 472’s peak frequency dropping from 12 to 7.5. Are Greenwich Council lobbying, and why does the council’s Transport and Regeneration meetings meet so irregularly? Gaps of three months or more seems common. Crazy when so much is happening and questions need asking.

9) Train cuts. Likewise, these areas could lose direct trains to Blackheath, Lewisham, Waterloo East and Charing Cross due to recent proposals.

10) Flytipping. It’s another widespread problem. Greenwich Council have only issued 14 fines so far for £400 since the power to do so was introduced last April- before it was a £75 maximum fine or prosecution. Lewisham Council had issued 28 fines for £400 by last August alone.

Once again, click here for information.

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