Save Our Sunlight! Stop the Towers at 8 Albert Embankment!

0 have signed. Let’s get to 5,000!


Unscrupulous developers are at it again! They’re planning to ruin one of London’s historic villages by building two luxury towers (24 + 26 storeys, respectively) and a hotel at 8 Albert Embankment.

We call on Lambeth Council and the Lambeth Council Planning Application Committee to stand with us to REJECT planning application 19/01304/FUL and:

  • Stop the Towers
  • Save Our Sunlight
  • Preserve London’s heritage

The planned development would:

  • Damage the integrity of a Grade-II listed building [1] (the old Headquarters of the London Fire Brigade)
  • Ruin a historic village and its daily functioning [2]
  • Block residents’ access to light [3]
  • Blight the Garden Museum’s community work [4]
  • Overshadow the community’s park [5]
  • Defy local planning policy by building residential tower blocks in a Key Industrial Business Area (KIBA) [6]

The developer U+I has teamed up with the London Fire Brigade to make as much money as they can by selling off our heritage to build luxury flats. U+I have ignored our requests to work together, and despite hearing objections from local community groups and Historic England, they have submitted their planning application WITHOUT CHANGING A SINGLE THING!

The local community calls on Dany Cotton (the Commissioner of the London Fire Brigade and land owner of the site), and Richard Upton (Deputy Chief Executive of U+I and a Commissioner at Historic England) to stop this extraordinarily damaging and excessively greedy planning application.

There is Big Business backing these luxury towers, so we need all the support we can get in order to defeat this unscrupulous developer.

With your help there is still hope.

NOTES:
1. The old Headquarters of the London Fire Brigade is a building which has proudly stood on the banks of Albert Embankment since 1937 and lends its iconic shape and design to London’s skyline on the Thames. It is a purpose built building with accommodation for the firefighters built above the station, their balconies overlooking the parade ground below. London locals and visitors alike have enjoyed the sights this building has to offer, including drills by heroes of the Fire Brigade in the parade ground, which the public were able to view. But not anymore! The developers are planning to turn this historic firefighters’ HQ into a hotel, build luxury flats on the site, build over its heroes’ parade ground and turn part of it into a limousine rank, and demolish a workshop built to service fire engines.

2. Lambeth Village is an inner-city community which has evolved from its pre-war context and is now integrated with the urban London lifestyle. But that doesn’t mean it can absorb excessive density, with a potential influx of over 2500 people a day. The area simply doesn’t have the infrastructure or amenities to support this. If the developers have their way, it will devastate the village and the daily life of those who call it home.

3. Access to daylight is a fundamental right and Building Research Establishment (BRE) guidelines establish thresholds of acceptable reductions. In the case of this scheme, developers will be causing many of the surrounding windows to fall below the limit of light received as stipulated in the guidelines. Have they no shame in proposing a scheme which will cause vulnerable people and families in the community to be deprived of their right to adequate daylight while sitting in their homes?

4. The development would blight the Garden Museum’s plans to work with the local community and star designer Dan Pearson to make the neighbourhood come to life with flowers and gardens. The tallest tower of luxury flats (up to 90 metres) would also block the light on the Museum’s own garden, opened in 2017 and designed by Dan Pearson who has collected rare plants from around the world. Each week school children come to this oasis to learn from living plants. The developers are stealing the sun the plants need to live.

5. Old Paradise Gardens is a historic public space gifted to the community by the Archbishop of Canterbury (who lives a stone’s throw away in Lambeth Palace) and is being revived as a community garden. One might say that the gardens are the heart of the community where schoolchildren come to play, locals walk their dogs, cyclists cut through the busy London streets and locals and workers alike flock to soak up the British sunshine. It’s also a place where people have gathered for community events for decades – the most recent community event included planting a wildflower meadow. The planned luxury towers would plunge Old Paradise Gardens into shadow. They will kill wildflowers in the meadow that the local children have planted. But the developers don’t care that the towers will overshadow this park and block out the sunshine that’s needed by all.

6. A Key Industrial Business Area (KIBA) is an area of land set aside to provide work for the local community. Building residential blocks on a key site effectively reduces employment opportunities for local people, reducing their life chances. With London’s house prices through the roof, developers are constantly finding ways to make themselves richer at the expense of local people who have called the area their home and been able to work nearby for decades.