Friday, 14 June 2013

Lea Bridge Community Forum meeting

Latest from the LVRPA

From Save Lea Marshes:

At the meeting on 7 February, to which Save Lea Marshes was invited by Shaun Dawson in order to improve the communication between the LVRPA and users of Leyton and Walthamstow Marshes, a number of promises were made. None of 
them have been kept. The meeting was not, as presented to us, a chance to change the way the LVRPA engages with us, but an attempt to pacify us while the LVRPA continued to hatch plans to develop our part of Metropolitan Open Land for commercial gain (campsite, livery stables) in order to enrich itself at the expense of 
local people. This is in direct the purpose of the LVRPA. 


Waterlogging: Brian Daley stated that the ODA would carry out remedial work by the end of the month (February). This did not happen. We told you the remedial action proposed by the ODA wouldn’t work long term anyway as there is the equivalent of concrete fill underneath the membrane. 

Wildflower inspection: scheduled for end of March, and at some point before June. Have these happened? If so, where are the results of the inspections? 

Seeding plan: Brian Daley was tasked to get the document showing exactly what seeds were planted and where from the ODA, and then pass this on to us. 

Not received. 
Full snagging list: this was promised for some time, by Martin Page at User Forum meetings and then again at the meeting on the 7th

Not received.. 
Feasibility study was to be completed by the end of March and results made known to us. Shaun Dawson stated that the results would be public. We have heard nothing. 


SLM to be invited to all investigations on Leyon Marsh AND SLM to be involved in finding solutions to the problems

Core Samples: We were invited at very short notice to attend at 2:00, In fact, the contractor started at 8:00. By the time we arrived, the contractor’s drill had broken when he got to the part of the site where the concrete fill was. The contractor was told to come back and finish taking the samples with a new drill bit, but we were not invited back when this happened, if it did happen and we have never received the results of the sample taking. There has been no further correspondence from Brian Daley about this at all.
The contractor confirmed to Brian Daley what we said at the meeting -- that the ODA plan of drilling drainage holes would not solve the drainage problem because of the concrete fill. Although we have amongst us an abundance of knowledge, whatever 
we say is ignored. BD refused to accept that the fill is equivalent to concrete, despite evidence from the contractor and the fact that we observed the whole excavation and building process during which he wasn’t even here.. 

Wildflower investigations: We have been given no information on this – although it is clear to see that there are no wildflowers (aside from some white clover of unknown provenance) and the only grass is monoculture fodder grass on the site of the basketball courts. There has been no spread of the grasses and wildflowers from 
the untouched part of the field to the “reinstated” area if there is an invisible, impermeable fence surrounding it which won’t let anything else in. 

User forum: The last user forum was18 March and there was no date set in the minutes for the next meeting, nor has there been any information on the so-called “Community Notice Board” as to when the next meeting is. The agenda for the last meeting did not include the proposals for the campsite and the extension of the 
riding stables. They were tabled at the meeting and our strong objections to both were ignored, as were our emails to members and officers on the day of the Executive Meeting reiterating our objections. The golf course users had no idea that 
the golf course was being closed for good, as the LVRPA website continued to promise its reopening right up to a week before the “announcement” of the campsite plans. Indeed, the LVRPA are already taking bookings for the campsite, even though the application for change of use will not be decided until 9 July. They have been quoted in the Waltham Forest Guardian as saying that their plans are for a temporary campsite, which is clearly untrue according to their own planning application. The only comfort we have is that this plan will probably be a complete failure as it is highly flawed. A better idea would be to re-open the golf course as a nine hole organic golf course, with meadow areas to encourage wildlife and enhance the appearance of the area, thus satisfying both the golfers and local walkers and nature lovers, while giving the LVRPA a less costly source of income. 

The lies told and empty promises made by the LVRPA ensure that the local users of the area do not have a chance to object to the LVRPA’s raids on our green spaces. The LVRPA presents the lack of objections as consent. But there is no consent to the commercialism of our green spaces – there is, instead, a groundswell of local public opinion that sees the LVRPA, not as the guardian of our land, but as an increasingly greedy predator. If the LVRPA truly wants a dialogue with the users of the land it is charged with protecting, however doubtful that seems to us, then it will have to drastically change its ways. 

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