Friday, 15 July 2016

New schools on MOL

Should Metropolitan Open Land be used for schools and what will this do to the traffic problems of Lea Bridge Road?


Dear Waltham Forest Our Community ,

Proposals for a new primary and secondary school in Waltham Forest

I am writing on behalf of REAch2 Academy Trust and the Lion Academy Trust about our proposals for a new primary school and a new secondary school on a single site in Waltham Forest.

As you may be aware, the Education Funding Agency (EFA) completed the purchase of the Thames Water Depot at 150A Lea Bridge Road in April 2016 after an open sale process.

The EFA is now working with REAch2 Academy Trust and the Lion Academy Trust to develop proposals so that a new two-form entry primary school and eight-form entry secondary school can open in temporary facilities on the site from September 2017, with permanent purpose-built school buildings being completed in 2018 and 2019, subject to planning permission.

Both Trusts already run local schools that are rated by Ofsted as Outstanding and we are confident the new schools will deliver the same high standards of education in an area that needs additional school places.

The Depot site itself would be transformed from concrete and hard-standing into new school buildings with playgrounds, sports facilities and new green space, which could also be used by the wider community out of school hours.

We are now starting public consultation on the principle of the two schools opening on the site, which will feed into our emerging designs for the two schools. There will be further consultation later this Summer before we submit a planning application to the London Borough of Waltham Forest in autumn 2016

As part of this first stage of consultation we would be delighted to welcome you to one of our public exhibitions to view our proposals and speak with members of the project team. The exhibition will take place on:

Public Exhibition One
When: Saturday 16 July, 10am-2pm
Where: WaterWorks Centre & Middlesex Filter Beds, Lammas Rd, E10 7NU

Public Exhibition Two
When: Tuesday 19 July, 4pm-8pm
Where: WaterWorks Centre & Middlesex Filter Beds, Lammas Rd, E10 7NU

In the meantime should you wish to meet with the team, or would like any further information, please do not hesitate to contact Helena Carrie on or 0207 612 8480.

Yours sincerely,

Justin JamesSir Steve Lancashire
Chief Executive OfficerChief Executive Officer
Lion Academy TrustREAch2 Academy Trust

Joe and I were at the consultation yesterday and they have a strong case for using the site for a school as it will do least damage to the aquifer. The case they made was that Thames Water would only sell the site to a new owner with a plan that was compatible with the aquifer.

Accepting that, it seems to me there is now a "once in a generation" opportunity to get access improvements to this part of the Lea Valley that we have wished for but have never been able to get implemented. This is not a definitive list and it needs refining but I would urge all community groups to push for improvements that will enhance the various new developments in the Lea Bridge area. Apparently the Government have purchased the site for the schools and Waltham Forest Planning Committee are not known for their opposition to anything so building on Metropolitan Open Land and on a Flood Plain will be of no interest to the committee especially as the Government will clearly ignore any opposition. 

1. Green Bridge (as in Mile End Park across Mile End Road) from Low Hall playing fields to the sustrans path by Walthamstow Marsh. This will give better access to the Lee Valley park for Walthamstow residents.

2. Green bridge from the Ice Centre to the Filter beds with a spur to the new schools. The schools are anxious to encourage cycling to school.

3. Create a public route between the school site and the river as the footpath by the Princess of Wales is very narrow and congested.

4. Access to the new Ice Centre and new schools need to be considered together and added to the new Mini Holland route which apparently is going to cross Lea Bridge station. Real joined up thinking is needed here if cycling is really to be encouraged.

5. The new residential development at 97 Lea Bridge Road also needs to be included in the pedestrian/cycling access strategy. 

6. All car parks for the schools, Ice Centre and 97 Lea Bridge Road need to be screened properly by trees. One of the eyesores of the area for decades has been the Ice Rink as it was never hidden by trees.

7. The Lee Valley Park's Waterworks also needs to be part of the debate but I don't know if the LVRPA have any ideas of what they intend to use the site for. Obviously the Riding Centre would be included in any new access routes.

There is not much time to influence the decision makers and this is a great opportunity to improve the park. 


On 20 July 2016 at 20:48, Claire Weiss [saveleytonmarsh] <>wrote:

Thanks Joe,

I have posted the link to the consultation on three Facebook groups: Save Lea Marsh, Don't Be Harsh Save the Marsh and Markhouse Corner & Lea Bridge Residents. I have also posted a general heads-up about congestion in LBR to 300 friends, some of whom are deeply involved in campaigns to protect community schools, others active on the environmental side including Mini-Holland.

I have also posted on the Lea Bridge Development Facebook page this link to the Belfast Telegraph about the scandalous profits from the Thames Water land sale:

A positive development is that councillors in Hackney and Waltham Forest (Barry Buitekant and Yemi Osho) have publicly posted that they will work together on aspects of these proposals.

It would be good to link up any SLM campaign with some folks in the WF aspects and with the efforts of the two councillors.


Date: Tue, 19 Jul 2016 17:06:14 +0000

Subject: Re: [saveleytonmarsh] Re: Thames Water Depot consultation


I attended today. Basically the site goes up to the river bank and they want it completely gated. I explored with a friend whether they would go for a green bridge. I then privately/personally explored an access strip along all of the river frontage and was advised that for child safety sake they were worried about the public approaching from the riverbank. I told them that W Forest had all school fences on their care upgraded so that you cannot see the children and that a strip would work. They then suggested that access to the river bank was essential for lessons. Finally they counted the gated playing fields within the site as MOL. I suggested to them that local and national activists will embroil them in a two year standoff unless we get green bridge etc.. I left saying that many organisations are up for a fight! For me they seem to have counted their beans and are arrogantly confident! We have until late August to get comments in place. This needs serious coordination!



------ Original message------
From: Celia Coram starsneedenergy@yah...
Date: Tue, 19 Jul 2016 17:50
To:;Charlie Charman;Caroline Day;Kev Dovey;Peter Mudge;Joseph Ward;Julian Cheyne;Vicky Sholund;Genevieve Skinner;Guy Slade;Laurie Elks;
Subject:Re: [saveleytonmarsh] Re: Thames Water Depot consultation

I've lobbed in objections as a local resident covering MOL, planning leapfrogging, encroachment, hacney border issues, research on need for provision etc.  Should we do a collective SLM one?


From: "Abigail Woodman [saveleytonmarsh]" >
To: Save Leyton Marsh >; Charlie Charman >; Caroline Day >; Celia Coram >; Kev Dovey >; Peter Mudge >; Joseph Ward>; Julian Cheyne >; Vicky Sholund >; Genevieve Skinner >; Guy Slade >; Laurie Elks 
Sent: Monday, 18 July 2016, 16:57
Subject: [saveleytonmarsh] Re: Thames Water Depot consultation


If you weren’t able to make it on Saturday and can’t go along tomorrow night, you can still see the plans and give your feedback at / /8000443916


> On 16 Jul 2016, at 12:15, Abigail Woodman > wrote:

> Hi

> I would urge as many of you as possible to attend the consultation for the new schools planned for the Thames Water Depot site on Lea Bridge Road.. It runs until 4pm today and then from 4-8 on Tuesday, and is at The Waterworks.

> I won’t go into the rights and wrongs of the proposals here but just wanted to say that I mentioned the idea of a green bridge across the Lea Bridge Road, something I know many have wanted for years, and the idea was taken up positively by the proposed head of the primary school. If you think it’s a good idea, more support would be great.

> Abi

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