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Please object now to KICC's new planning application for 25 Church

picture palace campaign 25 Church Road cinema for crystal palace

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#1 Noz

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Posted 24 December 2014 - 01:14 PM

The Picture Palace Campaign calls on local residents to object to KICC's planning application's for change of use of 25 Church Road in Crystal Palace to a D1 ‘Place of worship’, conference and counselling centre Kingsway International Christian Centre’s (KICC) planning application for the ‘change of use’ of 25 Church Road in Crystal Palace (former Rialto cinema) to a D1 church, conference and counselling centre with D2 add-on has been validated and is now out for consultation until Monday 12 January 2015, over the Christmas period.

Annabel Sidney, chair of the Picture Palace Campaign said “Regardless of what KICC say in their Supporting Planning Statement, there is no obligation for KICC to deliver or invite any D2 Public Entertainment activities should they obtain ‘change of use’ and none that could be successfully enforced. This is a source of great concern amongst many other serious planning issues such as traffic and parking, the impact on local trade and loss of opportunity to regenerate Church Road and boost local trade in the Crystal Palace Triangle.”

 

KICC are a church and a charity first and foremost. It is important to note that KICC’s charitable object is the ‘Advancement of the Christian Religion’ (not the advancement of entertainment, cinema, bingo, indoor recreation) and their mission is to grow their congregation.

 

If KICC obtain planning permission for ‘change of use’, the D1 permission will become the primary use of the premises. KICC are obliged through their charitable status to pursue their charitable object and the Charity Commission would expect them to do so. None of the activities KICC deliver to fulfil their charitable object fall within the existing D2 Public entertainment use as they do not operate mixed use community public entertainment hubs. Indeed, there is nothing in the application to demonstrate any serious intentions to run a mixed use entertainment venue. Moreover, there are no legal safeguards that can ensure that community use would be protected if ‘change of use’ were granted.

 

The Picture Palace campaign calls on all local residents and stakeholders to object to this application now. More guidance and information on grounds for objection can be found at the campaign’s website here – http://cinema4crysta...uk/latest-news/



#2 duncanm

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Posted 25 December 2014 - 03:07 PM

To play devil's advocate just a bit, isn't this less of a pressing matter now there are cinema plans just down the road in West Norwood?

#3 Fang

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Posted 25 December 2014 - 09:21 PM

It never was just about the conveinience of having a Cinema in the district. It was about the range of economic and regenerative benefits a cinema would bring for the local economy as well as the social and cultural pluses.

 

But lets be clear, what people are being asked to object to are the KICC's proposals for a change of use for 25 Church rd. 



"This is what we find, this is what we find, the hope that springs eternal, springs right up your behind."

#4 duncanm

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Posted 26 December 2014 - 11:03 AM

Oh sure, I'm not particularly a fan of schemes this group have been using to circumvent the rules, nor the council's appeasement of them so far. Being religious doesn't give you a carte blanched to do whatever you want, they e been p*ssing about for the past few years it seems buying a building they knew full well what they could and couldn't do with, but I'm surely not so cynical to think that they're using their charitable status to create a property portfolio.

Edited by duncanm, 26 December 2014 - 11:04 AM.


#5 charlie

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Posted 31 December 2014 - 05:08 PM

The Picture Palace Campaign has been copied into lots of very considered objections to KICC's proposals for change of use over the past 12 days. Thank you.  We'll be having a big push over the next 3 weeks to drive up numbers of objections and to ensure that the local community who live, work and spend their recreation time in and around Crystal Palace are fully aware and understand what change of use will actually mean if KICC were to be granted permission and why it is so important to retain the sole D2 use of 25 Church Road for the benefit of the whole community and to keep alive our vision of returning a cinema there .

 

We'll be having campaign stalls outside Sainsbury's this Saturday 3rd January and the following Saturdays 10th & 17th. Please do pop by and have a chat and if you can spare any time to help hand out flyers we'd love to see you.

 

If you can spare any time to help the campaign by leafleting your street, please drop us a line at hello@cinema4crystalpalace.org.uk

 

And, if you can make one New Year's resolution please please make it to write an objection. All the information on how to object can be found on the campaign website.

 

http://cinema4crysta...please-act-now/

 

This is not just about whether a cinema would be better at 25 Church Road, it is about the negative impact KICC's proposals to turn the premises into a church, conference, business centre, counselling centre etc. for their sub-regional congregation will have on the local area, residential amenity, parking and traffic and the local economy of the town centre. There are also major concerns that if KICC are granted permission for D1 (all the uses above which are KICC's bread and butter activities to raise funds for the acquisition of more and more premises)  the D2 use of the 25 Church Road will drop off as frankly the building is not fit for purpose as a multi-use venue as described in their supporting planning statement. It is nothing more than a church with a large church hall for hire and at exorbitant hire prices at that. More importantly, KICC will only let the building be hired for activities they approve of. 

 

Have a great New Year's eve everyone and the campaign hopes to see some of you at the stall on Saturday.  :) 


Edited by charlie, 31 December 2014 - 05:11 PM.


#6 jamesl

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Posted 04 January 2015 - 10:47 PM

Well I will be objecting , with all the energy I can muster, against KICC's latest proposals.

 

In 2009, thousands of residents and traders recognised the vital importance of preserving the assembly and leisure use of the Triangle’s only major D2 public entertainment venue and successfully challenged similar proposals by objecting to Bromley’s Planning department. 
 

Since then, despite promising not to ‘fight the community it intends to serve’, KICC’s lack of meaningful consultation with the local community has demonstrated that they have little regard for our views or any serious intention of the running the venue within an existing D2 use class which is welcomed and supported by residents and traders. They have had every opportunity to engage but have kept ‘The Open Door’ firmly shut, restricting the use of 25 Church Road to a handful of events of limited appeal and only lodging the latest planning application after Bromley councillors recommended that planning enforcement action be pursued. 
 
Lest we forget the current D2 use has always been available to KICC and yet it is only now, five years on, that they have attempted to suggest they are interested in promoting D2 use. Let's also not forget that only a few months ago 25 Church Road was still being described on KICC,s website as one of its 'network' churches and, reportedly, as long ago as 2011 they had already resolved to continue attempts to host religious services and had said as much to our town centre manager (see http://www.crystal-p...t-open-cinema/)
 
They have also already, despite not having D1 planning use. advertised since the Summer that they are holding a youth ministry at 25 Church Road every Wednesday
 
And Bromley Council had to serve them with a section 330 notice to compel KICC to give  a straight  answer as to  the use of the building 


Notwithstanding KICC’s current suggestion that the proposed ‘mixed use’ will facilitate the use of 25 Church Road by the community, their actions to date speak louder than their words. There is little to suggest that the predominant future use will be other than as a Church, conferencing and counselling centre.  Nothing that has happened in the last five years suggests otherwise – the hosting of periodic religious concerts and youth ministries, the appointment of one of KICC’s pastors as 25 Church Road’s Business Development Manager, the bussing in of KICC congregants from all over London to the handful of events held to date and the installation of huge, concealed, baptismal font do not inspire confidence in KICC’s intentions or promises.
 
Ultimately what they have designed is a replica of its Hoe Street former cinema which is used a as church and ancillary religious/KICC uses - not a community centre with Church attached. I see no reason now to believe the operating model here will be any different.

Edited by jamesl, 04 January 2015 - 10:51 PM.

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#7 Norwood lad

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Posted 05 January 2015 - 09:23 PM

A Petition is now online.

 

https://www.change.o...=share_petition



#8 Fang

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Posted 06 January 2015 - 06:31 AM

Signed.



"This is what we find, this is what we find, the hope that springs eternal, springs right up your behind."

#9 JMS

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Posted 06 January 2015 - 01:32 PM

Signed



#10 GipsyHill

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Posted 08 January 2015 - 12:02 AM

Signed



#11 Borussia

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Posted 09 January 2015 - 11:50 AM

Signed today.



#12 CapitAl

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Posted 09 January 2015 - 03:55 PM

Signed a few days ago, also sent an objection to Bromley



#13 charlie

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Posted 09 January 2015 - 08:34 PM

Excellent blog and objection from Tom Chance, local and Green Party candidate for coming election.

 

SAVING 25 CHURCH ROAD, CRYSTAL PALACE

Posted on  January 9, 2015

 by Tom Chance

 

I’m not a very regular cinema-goer, so I’ve never felt particularly passionate about the campaign to bring one to Crystal Palace. But I do fully support the Picture Palace campaign in trying to keep 25 Church Road as an assembly/leisure building for the local community, in the face of repeated attempts to turn it into a church.

 

save-25-church-road.jpg?w=750&h=273

 

We have planning rules that designate the building a certain “use class”. This one is D2, which means it is protected for uses like a cinema, dance, concert or bingo hall, gym or skating rink. It’s the only facility of its kind in an area already blessed with lots of fantastic places of worship. This area of planning policy exists to ensure we have a good mix of facilities in the local area, and can be used by councils to prevent communities being overrun with cafes and takeaways, or losing valuable office space. I hope they use this policy to reject the application.

 

We also suffer from traffic, which snarls up our roads and is responsible for illegal levels of air pollution as you can see from our study. The applicant’s paperwork uses some really misleading figures to try and suggest they will result in less traffic, which is quite unlikely. I hope Bromley Council take their legal obligations to reduce air pollution seriously, and reject the application.

 

I submitted this detailed response to the consultation run by Bromley Council.

 

Dear Sir/Madam,

 

I am a Bromley resident, and I am writing to object to the following planning application: 14/04557/FULL2 | Change of use from Bingo Hall Class D2 to mixed Class D1 (church) and Class D2 (Assembly and Leisure) use |25 Church Road Anerley London SE19 2TE

 

I do not support the proposed loss of a community and leisure facility with the D2 use class. This building is the last remaining such facility in the Crystal Palace Area, and is registered with the council as an Asset of Community Value.

The mixed use proposal is disingenuous, as the track record of the applicant and the restrictions mentioned at the consultation events (such as censoring many films incompatible with the applicant’s religious beliefs) mean it would not be a full-time and genuinely open community asset. Were this one of several mixed uses in the locality alongside a genuine D2 facility, such restrictions would not be a problem. The town centre already has a number of other D1 places of worship which provide valuable community spaces with reasonable restrictions on their use. But as the only dedicated D2 venue, to consign it to such a downgraded D2 use would be a significant loss.

 

This loss would damage the potential commercial vitality of the local town centre. Church Road enjoys lower levels of foot traffic than the two other sides of the ‘Triangle’, largely because it lacks a continuous set of active facades on both sides of the street, an anchor store or venue, and of course narrow pavements alongside a congested and polluted road. The planning application would see the facade of 25 Church Street remain largely inactive for most of the time, bringing no extra footfall to the street, and it would waste the opportunity for a significant anchor venue. Two church services a week, and a number of community events inside the building, may in fact leave the facade largely inactive all week.

Reviving a genuine D2 use in 25 Church Road could not only provide a commercial boost. It would also help to support Crystal Palace as a viable local centre, reducing travel needs and so supporting a more sustainable pattern of development.

 

The Travel Plan demonstrates the negative impact the proposals would have on the local streets. Even if the interim targets in table 8.1 were met, then with a congregation of 400 people the area would see an influx of 28-64 cars looking for parking in the area where very little is available. Anecdotal evidence from past ‘unlawful’ congregations suggests that it results in the loss of parking bays for local shops, and substantial levels of parking in Crystal Palace Park which may conflict with emerging plans for those facilities.

 

This increase in traffic also needs to be seen in the context of pollution levels on the local roads. Monitoring by Bromley Council indicates annual mean levels of nitrogen dioxide on Anerley Hill that remain significantly above the legal limit set by the EU. Informal monitoring which I carried out over July 2014 suggested that levels are at a similar, if not higher, level along Church Road and other approach roads such as Crystal Palace Parade, Westow Street and Westow Hill. The projected increase in traffic would further increase pollution levels. The council must make an absolute reduction in traffic levels a planning priority for this area, both to comply with European air quality law and to protect the health of the local population.

 

The Transport Assessment also makes a very flawed comparison of the applicant’s congregation and cinema-goers. Two of the comparators are surveys undertaken in 1993 and 2001 (the Odeon in Tottenham Court Road is not dated). These dates are long before a significant fall in traffic levels and car ownership, and a very significant rise in public transport and cycling, across Greater London and including the local area. Therefore they will not provide an accurate reference point. The applicant should commission a contemporary study of travel to more local and comparable cinemas such as the Brixton Ritzy and the Beckenham Odeon, and to other potential D2 leisure uses in comparable town centres. Given that the applicant’s congregation will largely be travelling from outside the area to 25 Church Road, while a revived D2 use could see local people no longer making longer trips to town centres such as Brixton and Beckenham, there may even be potential for a D2 use to result in a small net reduction in traffic in the area.

 

Finally, I should like to urge the council to not only reject this application, but to do so quite firmly. The applicant’s continued attempts to gain permission to change the building’s use, and its continued abuse of the planning conditions through events that are in all probability unlawful, have cast a pall over this local Asset of Community Value, damaging the viability of the town centre. The applicant should be strongly urged to either bring forward a business plan for a genuine D2 community asset, or sell the venue to another party that is willing to do so.

Have your say

 

I’d encourage you to put in your own response before the deadline – Thursday 15th January.

 

The application is available on Bromley Council’s planning web site, where you can also register comments.

 

Picture Palace have detailed guidance and instructions, which is well worth reading whether or not you support their point of view. They also have a petition to sign.


Edited by charlie, 09 January 2015 - 08:35 PM.


#14 Norwood lad

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Posted 11 January 2015 - 02:05 PM

Both Lambeth and Croydon are asking for views on this so be sure to object here as well and get local councillors to object and make sure their planning departments put in objections as they did to the last application.

 

Lambeth

14/06962/OBS | Observations on a proposed development within the adjoining Borough of Bromley with respect to a change of use from Bingo Hall Class D2 to mixed Class D1 (church) and Class D2 (Assembly and Leisure) use. | Adjoining Borough Observations Within Bromley

http://planning.lamb...l=NHEFQ6BO0GH00

 

Croydon

14/05342/CC | Change of use from Bingo Hall Class D2 to mixed Class D1 (church) and Class D2 (Assembly and Leisure) use | 25 Church Road, Anerley, London, SE19 2TE

http://publicaccess....YD_DCAPR_144379



#15 Norwood lad

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Posted 14 January 2015 - 03:47 PM

A Petition is now online.

 

https://www.change.o...=share_petition

 

 

Come on people we have until tomorrow to reach the magic 5,000 number. Less than 500 to go so get your friends, partners and colleagues to sign up to a good cause.







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