This is an interactive map of Kingston Society projects.

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Kingston Society project categories:

  1. Planning Proposals/Applications • indicated by red map pins
  2. Planning Policy • indicated by blue map pins
  3. Building Design & Public Realm • indicated by green map pins
  4. Riverside • indicated by orange map pins
  5. Local History and Heritage • indicated by purple map pins

Kingston Council has used its planning powers to protect North Lodge and South Lodge, in Kingsnympton Park, Kingston upon Thames, KT2 7TF. The buildings are locally listed for their heritage value.

A mechanism called an Article 4 Direction has been introduced which removes the ability, under national permitted development rights, to demolish buildings on these sites without first obtaining planning permission. This is a specific and targeted Article 4 Direction that has been introduced in response to an application to confirm if prior approval is required for the demolition of North Lodge. Despite later alterations, they both play an important role in the townscape character of the area. They are therefore considered a local amenity in terms of culture, heritage and ‘sense of place’. Full response here

What if a brand new swimming pool for Kingston could be free of cost (and debt) for Kingston’s residents?

Kingston Society member and architect Stephen Coates has a challenge for our council. Why hasn’t the Council sought the input of the community to respond to and help rescue the cancellation of the approved proposals to build a new swimming pool?

At June’s public meeting Stephen presented his own ideas of the kind of approach the council could adopt in order to deliver not only the leisure centre we all want, but an interim solution that doesn’t involve waiting 5 years for a pool to be built but additional housing and all of this paid for by someone other than us?

Stephen is a practising architect well used to building projects far bigger than anything Kingston has need for and understands at first hand the needs of developers and the financial structure they operate within in order to return profit from their developments. Full article here

Former cinema / bingo hall – new development proposals

The proposal PDF is here (The first three slides show the assented scheme)

Kevin Davies of Jericho Estates, who took over from previous developers CNM, who sat on their planning permission for 5 years, has kindly shared with the Society the pre-application proposals for this important grade 2 listed Art Deco cinema.

This follows an earlier opportunity to inspect the interior of the cinema and make suggestions for the best way forward to save the integrity of the building but find a workable contemporary use. Original plans for a a cinema, or a conference centre, or a music venue were all discounted. Full report here

River Thames Scheme Consultation

The RTS is the first flood and climate mitigation project to be described as nationally significant, reflecting its scope and ambition. The RTS will reduce the risk of flooding to thousands of homes, businesses and vital infrastructure while unlocking the economic, health and environmental benefits of the river between Egham and Teddington and responding to the challenges of climate change and nature recovery.   

This consultation is a statutory consultation being carried out in accordance with the Planning Act 2008 (and associated legislation and guidance). This is an important part of the planning process for the scheme. It is your opportunity to shape the scheme before we submit our application to the Planning Inspectorate.

Full response here

Our greatest effort in 2021 went into fighting the damaging proposals to build a ‘Campus’ for Unilever in the town centre with its fake promise of jobs and a deeply unecological parking proposal

“Eden Campus” is not a campus but the Surrey House site in Eden Street. The really poor and damaging applications were approved with 16 stories instead of the original 22.

We fought hard under the restrictions of Covid and the misrepresented promise of “jobs”. Unusually however, the fight wasn’t over yet: the Planning Inspectorate intervened, preventing the Council and GLA from issuing planning approval while the Secretary of State considered whether to call-in the applications and conduct a public enquiry.

This was, we are proud to say, due to our call-in request made in conjunction with the United Reformed Church. Our members worked behind the scenes crafting a very detailed and thorough case which we submitted to the Secretary of State just before the DCC meeting in March. The Planning Inspectorate put things on hold until the end of August when they decided not to call-in the application. Our campaign is over but we come away with strong opinions: Full response here