Junkyard opponents protest at Lambeth Town Hall in Brixton


Protest outside the West Norwood site in May of this year

Opponents of a plan to build a metal recycling facility serviced by dozens of large vehicles every day, alongside schools and apartment buildings, will protest outside Lambeth Town Hall in Brixton tomorrow (July 13).

The physically distant demonstration is scheduled to begin at 6 p.m.

Councilors meet at 7 p.m. at City Hall to decide on a building application to convert a former West Norwood car breaker that processed 152 tons of metal annually into a major Southwark Metals metal recycling facility.

The motion, which is supported by local councils but denied by local councils and the MP for the region, Helen Hayes, calls for 25,000 tons of metal per year to be processed at the site and transported there by large vehicles that use many local roads would drive.

The opposition is not limited to local residents and their #ScrapTheYard campaign.

The West Norwood operation would have a serious impact on traffic in Brixton and other parts of Lambeth.

Royal Mail recently reiterated and updated its objections to the building application.

It has received more than 2,500 comments on the council’s planning website, only four of them.

Additional objections to the motion have recently come from the Herne Hill Society and a combination of the Norwood Action Group, the Norwood Forum, the Norwood Planning Assembly, and Station to Station, the business district that encompasses the central shopping district of West Norwood.

Almost 5,500 people have already signed a petition against the plans.

The proposed location is at the end of a narrow cul-de-sac, Windsor Grove, on West Norwood High Street.

city ​​traffic
West Norwood High Street at the junction with Windsor Grove – the street is already congested and is used by trucks passing through construction yards

There are already two large construction yards in the immediate vicinity where truck deliveries disrupt local traffic, including buses to Brixton.

The planned junkyard would significantly increase truck traffic in the area.

Royal Mail is concerned about the impact of the proposed development on access to one of its delivery offices, which is right next to the controversial location.

Both the construction and operation of the site risk significant disruption to its operations and its ability to meet legal and regulatory requirements.

According to Royal Mail, parking spaces outside the depot could be used or blocked due to traffic jams, which has a significant impact on customers’ ability to access parcel services.

Royal Mail says revisions to the application and additional information developed by the applicant and Lambeth Council officials will not resolve these issues.

urban street
Windsor Grove looking towards its junction with West Norwood High Street

It is said that the development would have unacceptable effects on road safety and serious effects on the local road network.

Royal Mail is also concerned about the potential risk that dust and noise from the facility could adversely affect its employees.

Activists against the petition point out that there are two schools and residential buildings in the immediate vicinity of the site.

The application is being made by a real estate company, Urban & Provincial. It shares a director with Southwark Metals, which would operate the proposed junkyard.

A linked application, also from Urban & Provincial, is applying for approval to renovate an existing landfill on Shakespeare Road in Herne Hill by building more than 200 apartments.

In order for this development to proceed, the municipality of Lambeth in the district has to find replacement capacities for waste disposal.

The Herne Hill Society says in their objection that the Windsor Grove site is much smaller than the Shakespeare Road site and only processes metals.

The Shakespeare Road site mainly deals with construction, demolition and excavation material that would have to be removed elsewhere.

Metal processing plant
Southwark Metals Millwall site near Millwall football field
construction site
The location at the end of Windsor Grove

Southwark Metals has made it clear that the proposed site in West Norwood would carry out the work currently underway on a site near Millwall football field.

The Herne Hill Society says that “these two linked applications may meet the landlord’s requirements” but are in conflict with several Lambeth and London-wide planning guidelines.

Society would like both of these to be postponed and the Lambeth Council to work with the Great London Authority and the Western Riverside Waste Authority (WRWA) and other counties to find permanent waste management solutions .

A neighboring borough, Croydon, has reiterated its rejection of Windsor Grove’s motions, despite changes being made by the petitioner and Lambeth officials.

The Herne Hill Society says the tweaks will “gloss over” the full impact of the proposal on increased traffic in Lambeth.

Documents in the application on the topic of waste are “hardly credible”.

Lambeth officials’ filing on the application is more than 54,000 words long and details several conditions that would be placed on the site if the planning committee approves the application.

It can be downloaded from the Council website.

The planning committee meeting will be broadcast online. Details on the council website.

The Norwood Forum has all the details of the campaign against the site:

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