Is Greenwich Council supporting Eltham?

By | January 21, 2023

Recently an Eltham Park resident contacted Charlie and Spencer to express his concerns about the direction of travel locally (this is not a car based pun). We were in regular contact with him as Councillors and with his permission are sharing his view of what is going on in Eltham at the moment – something he has sent to local Labour Councillors who represent the area.

A letter from an Eltham Park resident to Greenwich Council

Six years ago you commissioned a survey that you claimed showed the majority in Eltham
Park Gardens wanted a CPZ. At the time and over the following years this survey has been
shown to be wildly inaccurate and not representative of the wishes of the local community but
still you persist. I won’t repeat all the objections but restrict myself to saying you showed
both I and my neighbour had voted in favour of the CPZ in the 2016 survey which is
demonstrably untrue. I have objected ever since.

Now you seek to use this corrupted survey to push for a CPZ again.

853 headline about CPZs for the whole borough from August last year

In the intervening 6 years many people have left the area and I know from my own survey
that there is now virtually no support for a CPZ, if there ever was. The Cul de Sac end of the
road has always objected. As a result of your policy to make Eltham as unattractive as
possible the number of commuters using Eltham station has reduced dramatically. Surely you
realise the use of commuter trains has dropped by 40%. If there ever was a parking problem,
and if there was you created it with your senseless actions in Glenlea Road, it certainly
doesn’t exist now. Because of the slump in use following Covid, the railway has reduced the
trains and removed a route that had been in existence for 125 years. Your ongoing plans to
destroy Eltham High Street as a shopping centre are continuing the trend to reduce the footfall
in the area resulting in major chains moving out and local traders no longer able to find
customers. You have even extended this plan to include other local shopping areas. We must
not forget your traffic calming measures many of which were long since declared illegal by
the government ombudsman. Richard Cornell made some changes after my complaint and
promised more action the following year but many ramps remain well above guidelines 8
years later. The Ombudsman gave up.

Your systematic destruction of Eltham started back in the 80’s. I moved here in the 1970’s to
what was then an attractive suburb with two parks and adjoining woods, a local leisure pool in
Eltham Park South and beautifully maintained parkland in Eltham Park North. Other
attractive features included a golf course and a local station with totally free parking all
around. The High Street with its very wide road, parking both sides, and pavements attracted
shops from the major chains along with entertainment, restaurants and local retailers. Add the
excellent selection of schools and it was almost an ideal place to live in London.

Headline from the News Shopper about the demolition of the Eltham Park Lido

Then came the mid 1980’s and the Rochester Way relief Road was allowed to slice through
the town with no thought given to increased pollution either then or since. The local station
closed, the swimming pool was destroyed, houses were demolished and the golf course

That was the beginning of the end. Major shops began to close, the High Street became run
down and people began to avoid the area. All the time you continued to add parking and other
restrictions and did everything you could to make the area as unpleasant and inaccessible as
possible. Now you stoop to insanitation by reducing bin collection to fortnightly.

Following the stance of the Mayor of London you have announced that ‘attitude surveys’
slowed the process down and would no longer be required, making the views of local
residents immaterial. In future CPZs and other traffic management arrangements, legal or not,
would be installed as the Council saw fit. Labour democracy in action. Now you include the
isolated cul-de-sac of Eltham Park Gardens that you have cast into a parking wilderness
where non resident cars have never appeared excepting if the occupants wish to use the local
park and woods. Services reduced, no public transport, no parking without cost, continual
pollution from the A2 and not even access to the local hospitals by car.

Following the pandemic the world has changed and it’s time you changed with it but I’m sure
you can, and will, continue to find further ways to complete the total destruction of Eltham.

Category: Eltham Uncategorized

About Spencer Drury

Spencer was one of the three Councillors for Eltham North Ward between 2002 and 2022. He lost his Council seat in the May 2022 elections and now occasionally contributes to debates on local issues.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *