M&S Earlsfield to open THIS THURSDAY 16th and *Golden Tickets* are up for grabs!

The countdown is on to the opening of the brand-new, better, fresher M&S Earlsfield store on 16th November at 9am.

The show-stopping new 7,000 sq ft store will offer local shoppers a fresh market-style Foodhall, filled to the brim with great quality, trusted value produce from M&S Select Farms, an M&S Bakery offering daily baked fresh bread and pastries, and new lower prices on its Remarksable range – including Super Soft sliced bread, RSPCA Assured fresh milk, and beef mince from trusted M&S Select Farmers.

Percy Pig will be on-hand to welcome shoppers to the new store as the team hands out 200 golden tickets to the first customers through the door. Every golden ticket holder is guaranteed a win – whether it’s a free bag of Percy Pigs or freshly baked cookies from the new M&S Bakery, and to mark the occasion one lucky customer will win a £200 voucher!

The new store marks a significant investment for M&S in South West London and is designed with customers and local families at its heart. Located within the Wandle Quarter, the store is led by Connor Heaver along with a team of more than 65 new M&S colleagues, who are all excited to open the new store and offer local customers the very best service.

Connor Heaver, Store Manager at the new M&S Earlsfield store, said: “The countdown is truly on until 16th November when we can finally welcome customers through our doors! It’s been a busy few weeks behind the scenes with the whole team working really hard to put things together and we’re excited for everyone to see what the new store has to offer.

Located within The Wandle Quarter, and only a short walk away from the station, the new M&S Earlsfield Foodhall is ideal for both bigger basket family shopping or for those popping in on the commute home. The store is located at 150a-170 Penwith Road, London, SW18 4QA and is open from 8am-10pm Monday-Saturday, and 11am-5pm on Sundays.And of course, follow M&S Earlsfield on TikTok and Facebook for all the latest product and store opening news.

Advert Phone Booth Company Goes Bust

Firm that puts up UK’s ad-supported phone booths enters administration

Apparently the firm did not achieve the growth it had predicted. Not only were some councils blocking installation on grounds of the additional clutter they would add to public space. They also faced opposition from privacy campaigners, with good reason as Wired.com explains in this article: https://www.wired.co.uk/article/linkuk-bt-google-free-wifi-and-calls-london

They also become notorious for use by drug dealers and other criminals says TheRegister.

It is not clear if the local council will not get these unsightly monsters removed from our streets.




Wash Doctors launches in Wandsworth

This service is an on demand car washing app. It is a simple and efficient idea, all you do is drop a pin on a map where you car is approximately parked, put in your registration and they will come and clean it. They therefore provide a considerably more convenient service than waiting in a long line at your local car wash!

They also feel they are much more environmentally friendly than any current car washing service! They are using new solution technology to clean a car with less that 1 litre of fluid with no run off into the water supply.

Wash Doctors, a group of 5 under-25s, was formed in 2017 and have so far had a great response from the local residents for the service.

The Diamond Jubilee Bridge – Spring Update

Update from Chris Medland, One-world design architects

Happily, as reported in February the bridge has met its planning deadline of March this year and has commenced with the issue of a certificate of Lawfulness by Wandsworth Council in regard to the piles installed on site in Battersea by Barratt London.

Design Copyright handed to Wandsworth

Since February, and Wandsworth Council taking a lead role, One World Design has granted the design licence to the Council pro-bono in order that they can progress the project. The bridge now finds itself in a holding pattern with conversations occurring between Wandsworth and Hammersmith & Fulham Councils, central government, TfL and the Mayor of London. Essentially the key question it seems is no longer if the bridge will be completed, it is a question of when.


Public Sector Funding

The key inhibiter to immediate progress is funding. We understand that around 30 – 40% of the funding is in place and that other funding streams are being investigated with efforts by Wandsworth and Jane Ellison MP in particular. The bridge is public and would be owned and maintained by the council and does meet the criteria for TfL funding. The Mayor of London remains supportive but has said that in terms of funding, even though the TfL business case and cost review was favourable, his priorities are Eastward. Ultimately the priorities of TfL are dictated by the Mayor.

Hot Topic

The recent apparent demise of the Garden Bridge and the relaunch of the Nine Elms Bridge proposal has meant that new river crossings are a hot topic. The Diamond Jubilee Bridge has been mentioned in some of the press and won a recent poll by BD magazine which asked its readers what bridge they felt was most deserving to be built. The link to this article is here: http://www.bdonline.co.uk/news/diamond-jubilee-bridge-tops-thames-crossing-poll/5087395.article

Right now, whilst bridges are a hot topic we would like your assistance in two ways if your feel it appropriate. Firstly we need to get the message out there that this opportunity exists for the right backer. If that means going on Vanesa on Air or LBC to explain the endeavour that would be fine, equally so a wider audience could be gained through a piece in the Evening Standard, Metro or alike or indeed something like an inflight, lifestyle or corporate magazine –do you know anyone who can help make this happen? Secondly, and more directly, you may work or be related too or friends with someone that may be the link in the chain to a potential backer. If you have a contact that may be happy to help any of these things happen then please do contact

Chris Medland RIBA


tel:     0203 2020049

Wandsworth Tops Economic Activity Table

Wandsworth has topped a league table of all London boroughs which show the different levels of economic activity by the working age population across the capital.

In Wandsworth 85% of the population aged 16 to 64 are economically active. This is the highest in the capital.  The next 5 are Richmond upon Thames with 84.6%, Lambeth with 83.6%, Bexley with 83.3%, Southwark with 83% and Merton with 82.8%.

Economic activity rate - aged 16-64

Economic activity rate – aged 16-64

By contrast the lowest are Kensington and Chelsea with only 71.7% of the 16 to 64 year olds who are economically active, Barking and Dagenham with 72.3%, Camden with 73.2, Westminster with 73.7% and Hackney with 74%.

The London economic activity rate is 78.3% and the overall UK figure is 77.7%. London is the fourth highest in the UK behind the South West at 80.8%, South East at 80.6% and Eastern at 79.9%.

Business based in Wandsworth can access a range of services via http://www.wandsworth.gov.uk/info/200013/business_support_and_advice

Notes on Statistics

Source: Annual Population Survey from the Office for National Statistics. Annual Population Survey is residence based and a continuous household survey covering the UK.

The data is for the economic activity rate of those aged 16-64. Economically Active people are those either in employment or unemployed.

The APS is the source recommended for employment-related statistics, such as estimates of the number of people in employment or unemployed.

Table provided by www.gmbunion.org

Wandsworth Business Awards Triumph for Local Companies

This is the fourth year that Wandsworth Chamber of Commerce has presented its business awards. This year was the biggest yet, with 260 people attending a black tie sit-down meal, gourmet-catered by local foodies Anson and Curtis.

At the presentation taking place in the council’s Civic Suite, were many local businesses, competing for 12 awards in various categories, from Best Family Business to Best Hospitality.

Steve Pinto CEO, Wandsworth Chamber of Commerce, says, “Wandsworth Chamber were delighted to be able to continue the tradition of the Wandsworth Business Awards for the fourth successive year. The 2016 Business Awards and Gala Dinner celebrations exceeded all expectations with a record number of businesses and key stakeholders attending. These Awards highlight some of the most vibrant businesses in the borough and set a high benchmark for aspiring local talent. Our sponsors are very supportive and without their help these businesses would not have the opportunity to be recognised, so please visit our website and engage with our Winners, Finalists and Sponsors. …and if you run a business we would love to see you enter next year’s Awards.”

The awards are the high point of the local business calendar, with Wandsworth comedian John Maloney giving the awards a polished hosting and speeches by Chamber Chairman Douglas Shanks and President Jane Ellison MP.

Category and Winner:

1. Best Green Business

Wandsworth Oasis

2. Best Family Friendly Business

The Putney Clinic

3. Commitment to the Community

Battersea Power Station Development Company

4. Best Hospitality

Brickwood Coffee & Bread

5. Best Marketing

Boot Buddy

6. Best Customer Service

The Hive Honey Shop

7. Best Training & Development

Julius Rutherfoord & Co

8. Best Independent Retailer

We Brought Beer

9. Best SME Business

Assael Architecture

10. Best New Business

Crossfit Shapesmiths

11. Entrepreneur of the Year

Le Bureau

12. Business of the Year

Minar Jewellers

Tooting Market

The main sponsors of the awards were Wandsworth Council and Southside Shopping Centre. The awards show that Wandsworth is a thriving place for business and commerce, and they show excellence in the winning businesses and the many other participants who continue to make the Borough a great place to do business.

Photo by Charlie Round-Turner http://roundturnervisuals.com



Author: This article was written by Julian Jackson, Wandsworth Chamber of Commerce’s resident blogger and copywriter – www.julianjackson.co.uk https://julianj.journoportfolio.com

UnderTheDoormat raises £380,000 via Crowdfunding

A Holborn Penthouse available for rent

A Holborn Penthouse available for rent

UnderTheDoormat is only a couple of years old. The Wandsworth business has just raised over £380,000 through crowdfunding, over 220% of its target, to finance expansion. The idea behind the business is to provide a high quality one-stop method to let out your home when you are not there. Matthew Gardiner, Director of Acquisition Marketing says, “There are over 600,000 homes in London which are empty for four weeks or more per year. Often the owners don’t realise that there is a hassle-free way to raise an income from the property. That’s what we were set up to do.”

This is another of those ideas facilitated through the digital economy and the internet. UnderTheDoormat will organise absolutely everything about letting a home out – bookings, guest greetings, insurance, professional cleaning, so that the homeowners will have peace of mind when they join the scheme.

Many people prefer staying in a proper home, instead of a hotel, it may be less impersonal, have a garden for the kids to play in, or there may be dietary requirements that a hotel can’t easily cope with, there are a whole host of reasons why staying in a house or flat could transform a good trip into a great one. The success of AirBnB is testimony to that.

Primrose Hill kitchen

Primrose Hill kitchen

Matthew identifies getting the word out as the biggest obstacle they have met so far, “A lot of people do not know that they could rent their property out when they are away on holiday or business. Even fewer realise there is a company out there that will organise everything for them. so it is important for us to let people know there is this opportunity.”

The crowdfunding target, using Seedrs, was originally £175K but in the end 355 people from 28 countries raised over £380K in 2.5 months, will be used to rapidly expand their London presence. The company also has ambitious plans for international expansion and has recently hired a COO to spear-head that growth into other cities.

Matthew says that Wandsworth Chamber of Commerce was very useful in helping spread the word about the project through their networking events, breakfasts and putting the team in contact with people who have helped the project along.

This is a startup which looks like it is really going places. Matthew says, “we’ve an asset light business, that sustainably makes use of under-utilised property, pays homeowners to go on holiday and provides tourists with a truly local experience. That’s a business model with a lot of wins in it.”

Merilee Karr, the CEO of UnderTheDoormat will be speaking at the
“Access to Finance” Wandsworth event which will take place at Battersea Arts Centre on Tuesday 27th September at 6-8 pm.

The daylong event will feature seminars and 1-1 advice sessions and participating organisations include: ICAEW, NatWest, Funding Circle, the British Business Bank, Seedrs, GLE and Start up Direct.

The evening seminar (6pm-8pm) featuring Merilee  Karr will be a discussion on crowdfunding and alternative finance for SMES – Funding Circle, Seedrs, GLE and the British Business Bank will be members of the panel.


Author: This article was written by Julian Jackson, Wandsworth Chamber of Commerce’s resident blogger and copywriter – www.julianjackson.co.uk https://julianj.journoportfolio.com

Wandsworth Residents back 20mph limit

The results of a three month long public consultation staged earlier this year showed a clear majority of those who took part supported a 20mph speed limit in quieter residential areas.

The change, which was unanimously endorsed by councillors from both parties on Tuesday night, will not affect Wandsworth’s busy main roads or any Transport for London-controlled Red Routes.

Cllr Cook with business spokesman Cllr Kim Caddy

Councillors were told last night that 59 per cent of those who responded to the consultation supported a 20mph limit in quieter and less busy residential streets. Sixty four per cent agreed that the limit should remain unchanged on main roads.

The council’s transport and environment spokesman Cllr Jonathan Cook said: “I have always supported this proposal because I believe it will deliver clear benefits for local people. But it would have been quite wrong for us to have proceeded without first asking residents and businesses for their views.

“Having received a very clear result from the consultation we can now move this scheme forward.

“In my view this change will make our streets safer for drivers, cyclists and also very importantly for pedestrians.

“We hope that improving safety levels will encourage people to leave their cars at home and travel instead by bike or on foot.

“If we can reduce the number of vehicles on our roads then not only will our streets be quieter and safer but there should also be an improvement in local air quality levels.”

Implementing a borough-wide 20mph limit will cost £725,000 and will be funded by a grant received from Transport for London.

This will pay mainly for appropriate signage and road markings to inform drivers of the lower limit. There are no plans within these proposals to introduce any additional speed humps or “sleeping policeman” anywhere in the borough.

Enforcement of the new limit will be carried out by the police, with the council working in support of their efforts, alongside community leaders, crime prevention panel members and neighbourhood watch co-ordinators. Any revenue generated by speed fines goes direct to HM Treasury not the town hall.

Decision deferred on the 17 storeys scheme in Swandon Lane (Homebase site)

Author: Cyril Richert

Decision deferred on the 17 storeys scheme in Swandon Lane (Homebase site)Decision on Swandon Lane/Homebase planning application (p.a. 2015/6608) was deferred yesterday at the planning application committee meeting. While the Council’s officers recommended approval for the scheme including a 17 storey tower, it emerged that the developers now wish to review their proposals and consult further.

Apparently, the Council’s officer in charge of the case is himself bemused. Is it that now even developers are thinking that the Council is passing any scheme without any consideration on the local impact and unlike the Council, are cautious with local resident opposition? In any case it would be wise to confine joy for the present.

The Planning Officers believed that reducing the initial proposal from 25 storeys to 17 storeys was a victory for Council’s policies. Despite those policies saying that buildings of 9 storeys or more are unlikely to be appropriate for the site. It shows again the discrepancy between the official line and the views real views in the Council.

According to a campaigner : “Former Land Owners who gained consents when being forced to adhere to Council Policy on height, massing and density are considering seeking financial redress for loss caused by a complete sea change in over-riding Policy should an Approval be granted that would be contrary to Council and London Mayoral Policy.” Although there is indeed a financial risk to be considered by the Council, this does not impact directly the decision that developers are making.

The proposal received over 100 objections along with the views of the Wandsworth Society, Battersea Society and Riverside West Residents Association.

>> Read the objection from the Wandsworth Society to the 17 storeys scheme in Swandon Lane (Homebase site)

Filed under: Wandsworth Town Decision deferred on the 17 storeys scheme in Swandon Lane (Homebase site)

Objection to the 17 storeys scheme in Swandon Lane (Homebase site)

Author: Wandsworth Society

Objection to the 17 storeys scheme in Swandon Lane (Homebase site)Here is the objection sent by the Wandsworth Society to the Council, regarding Homebase site in Swandon lane redevelopment proposal (Application number 2015/6608).

We object to the application on a number of grounds:-

1. Building height

(i)  The proposed tower of 17 storeys- 62 m in height will dominate the residential area to the south, looming over the low-rise flats and houses in the Tonsleys, parts of which are within The Wandsworth Town Conservation Area.

(ii)  In the approved SSAD(section 3.6) “the height at which a development in this location will be considered to be tall is 9 storeys”. Tall buildings in this situation “are likely to be inappropriate”.

(iii)  This is not a town centre site, nor is it a focal point. Tall buildings approved in the town centre have generally been located in mixed –use or commercial locations where their overbearing character has been held not to affect significant numbers of local residents. Here the tower will directly dominate the several hundred close-knit houses, flats and cottages in the Tonsleys, an area of some 400 metres square.

(iv)  The rail tracks on the southern boundary of the site are on an embankment some 5 metres in height, thus the top 15 storeys of the tower and indeed the top 7 storeys of the “Garden” and “Crescent” buildings will directly overlook Old York Road and the Tonsleys, dominating views from the south.

(v)   The tower is on a totally alien scale. The Tonsleys are built on a steep slope running up to East Hill and this will make the development highly visible from these houses and streets. The corner of East Hill and Alma Road is 15 metres above Old York Road, thus the tower will be more than three times the  height of the highest point in the whole residential area north of East Hill!

The height of the tower is totally inappropriate, as well as being in contravention of the approved Local Plan. We suggest that the two nearest developments, the “Schoolyard” in Eltringham Street(2-9 storeys) and Riverside West(mainly 7 storeys) which are each approximately 200 metres from this site should set the standard here. They are on a human scale, 9 storeys or less in height( and thus appropriate in this location) and would set an acceptable height for the scheme.

2. Massing and Design.

(i)    In our view an excessive amount of built space is crammed onto the site, totally overwhelming the two open spaces provided. The density of development equals even the high levels accepted in the town centre.

(ii)   The massing has the effect of creating a cliff face to Swandon Way and  when the B&Q site opposite is developed, likely to be of a similar height, this section of Swandon Way will become a “canyon”.

(iii)   We are most disappointed with the appearance of the individual blocks, which resemble a regimented 1970’s office development, both in massing and choice of materials.

(iv)  The open spaces created are hard-landscaped and lack interest, with the attractive areas of the gardens restricted to private use at podium level and invisible to people crossing the site, or using Swandon Way.

3. Affordable Housing.

(i)    We are again being asked to accept a low level of affordable housing at 21% with no contribution towards off site housing.

(ii)    Yet again, this falls well below the standard set under Core Strategy policy IS5 and wastes another opportunity to provide more housing at reasonable prices.

(iii)    As in many other schemes accepted in Wandsworth, the type of accommodation provided will not contribute towards solving the very real local housing needs.

4. Cumulative Effects.

(i)   The rapid expansion of the population in and around the centre of Wandsworth is putting increasing pressure on local services. We have noted Thames Water’s lengthy concerns in their letter of 21st December 2015.

(ii)    We are also concerned about the ever increasing traffic in this area, which, when the new gyratory system is operational will put increased pressure on Swandon Way. This will also increase the already well publicised  decline in air quality in South West London.

(iii)   Wandsworth town station is already overcrowded at peak times and a source of great concern and discomfort to commuters. Yet another high population development which is likely to be occupied by potential commuters will contribute to intolerable over use of the station even after Network Rail’s proposed improvements have been completed.


(i)   The location is totally inappropriate for a tower of 17 storeys, in breach of the SSAD guidelines.

(ii)   The tower and the other two blocks will loom over the residential area to the south, dominating the existing human scale low-rise buildings.

(iii)  The design and massing of the scheme is overbearing and unfriendly and should be reconsidered.

(iv)  The nearby Schoolyard and Riverside West developments should provide the template for the scale and height of this development. A smaller scheme would reduce the strain on local transport and services.

(v)   A higher proportion of affordable housing should be provided.

(vi)  The application should be refused.

We trust that you will take our comments into consideration in making your report and recommendations to the Planning Applications Committee.

>> Read also: Plans to replace Homebase, Swanden Way, by several residential buildings


Filed under: Wandsworth Town Objection to the 17 storeys scheme in Swandon Lane (Homebase site)