Chairman’s Review of the Year 2023

Chairman’s Report 2022/2023


Croydon Council’s Overall Planning Policy

Last year I congratulated Jason and all those who helped him in becoming Mayor because his policies, including cancelling SPD2 which legitimised overdevelopment show more respect to existing residents when planning applications are considered. However we were worried that in the absence of SPD2 and any revision to the 2018 plan any applications rejected by the planning committee but appealed by the developer to the Government Planning Inspectorate  would be overturned.  We did not need to worry.  The Inspector has carried on rejecting almost all appeals.

The Government White paper on Planning September 2023

My understanding of the White Paper is that targets are now set locally rather than nationally but still using government guidelines.  In terms of site size 10% of all housing should be on sites of 1 hectare or less so there will still be pressure on Councils to approve such developments. In terms of social housing the paper says there is no need for social housing in developments that are not major developments. I suspect this will mean infill developers will now look to put more than nine flats in a development if space allows.

Lastly there is lots of talk about neighbourhood groups  discussing with the planners in terms of agreeing the look of an area.  I suspect this goes back to conservation areas as  was raised at last years meeting. There are already 18 conservation areas within Croydon and does anyone know where the nearest is? It comprises the collection of early 20th century arts and crafts houses at the top of Croham Manor Road and Hurst Way set up in 2008.  The CVRA area is too big and diverse to become a conservation in itself but I suspect many of the components of it could become their own smaller conservation areas.

Traffic Issues.  

The  plans to make Melville a Healthy School Street between 0800-0930 and 1400-1600 and restrict entry to residents only were rejected by the Council.  Thank you Croydon Council thank you for listening to us and looking at the results of our traffic survey.


Chasro are going to the courts for a third time later this year to try enforce the Whitgift Foundation Covenant at the corner of Selsdon Road and West Hill. They won the first case but lost on appeal. If they win this time it means all the “late” Whitgift Foundation covenants including those on the other side of the Old Whits Playing Fields are still valid – and the Whitgift Foundation cannot sell them off to the highest bidder.

Individual Planning Applications

David Rutherford has again done a fantastic job in identifying and organising our response to inappropriate applications in our area.

As previously mentioned, thankfully under the new regime applications going to the Planning Committee are mostly are being rejected however we must carry on on helping David to refer them by acting on his communications and putting in comments on the Council’s Planning Database.  The more opposing comments there are it makes it easier for the Planning Committee to reject them.

We have seen the Planning Department catching up on their backlog of applications.  This was partly achieved through not answering their phones.  Not only does a backlog mean individual applications can be referred to the Government Inspectorate, an excessive collective banklog means the Inspectorate take over the running of the Planning Department. Something that most resident associations would probably not want.

Croham Hurst School/Old Palace Junior School

I have had a look at the deeds for the school. At first glance they appear to have the same covenants as the restof the properties in Melville and Castlemaine which might be good news regarding development

Lloyd Park

Owen Williams from Friends of Lloyd Park has been coordinating responses to the questionnaire on improvements to Lloyd Park.  He also has a corporate sponsor to finance the return of the bowling green back to grassland if  a suitable alternative use is not found for it.  Well done Owen.

Royal Russell School Gate on to Hollingsworth Road

Around 50 parents a consistently day pick up their children from Royal Russell School by parking in Hollingsworth Road  where there is a 2nd entrance/exit to the school.  As the school has applied for permission to replace the junior school buildings and to slightly expand the numbers at the school the residents of Hollingsworth have asked the planners to make a condition of approval that only those pupils what either walk or use public transport are allowed to use this gate.   We have advised the residents how to object to the plans and we ourselves have objected to the plans on that basis.

Purley Pool

We believe the current plan for the Pool do not include sufficient parking to make the Pool a success. The CVRA committee are happy for the towers to be higher if that enables sufficient parking to be built providing there is not significant loss of light for existing residents.


A thank you to everybody who has helped this year.

It is appreciated.

Jeremy Gill

18 October 2023