Saturday, 16 July 2011

Brockley Assembly Funding Secured!

Proposed trees opposite the Brockley Barge
This morning the local assembly voting event saw a plethora of very worthy local projects bidding for funding, one of which was our project to plant 6 new trees along a pretty bleak stretch of Brockley Road. The good news is that we were successful in our bid and the project will now continue with further consultations with local stakeholders and consultation with the relevant authorities. This project is great example of the good work that local groups can do when working in partnership with the Brockley Cross Action Group and the Brockley Society all involved in the planning of this project.

Alongside our project we were also supporting a bid from the Brockley Cross Action Group to install a new set of steps on Brockley Common alongside the earthy bank that has become a highly-used access point to the station from the northern end of the site and this also received full funding. There were other projects with food growing and planting at the core of their aims which received funding too so in summary a great success for those with green fingers!

Set out below is a description of the proposal and some conceptual images of the proposed trees (please note the trees shown are conceptual! Some ideas on the different tree varieties can can be viewed on our Flickr site which also has other images of the project alongside our other work.

The proposal

The council’s recent work to widen the pavement and provide a parking bay along the parade of shops situated on Brockley Road between Cranfield and just beyond Harefield Roads sadly did not include the provision for any trees. As a result there is now a vast expanse of pavement which looks bleak and desolate. 

This project aims to enhance the new pedestrian pavement adjacent to the shops by planting an area of 4 trees along the eastern side of Brockley Road (2 each side of the pedestrian crossing), one tree outside the Post Office sorting office towards the corner with Harefield Road  and one tree on the western side of Brockley Road on the new widened pavement on the corner of Coulgate and Brockley Road.

Tree planting is a priority of the London Mayor's office as well as the government and is in  line with Ward residents’ Assembly priorities. The effects of global warming make the planting of new trees in the capital all the more imperative. Although street tree management is the responsibility of Lewisham Council, the resources available for planting new trees are unfortunately very limited. Most of Lewisham Council’s ‘Green Scene’ tree budget has to be spent on risk management and maintenance of existing stock, consequently there is little left to satisfy the increasing community demand for new trees.

Members of Transition Brockley and Brockley Cross Action Group have already greatly improved and enhanced the area around Brockley station.  The aim of this project is to achieve a further enhancement of the Brockley Road retail area which will benefit all local residents. 

We will liaise with Lewisham Council's 'Tree Department at Green Scene' who  have agreed to acquire, plant and maintain the trees. We will work together in subsequent years with other interested groups mentioned above  to further enhance the tree pits by underplanting  bulbs, perennials and small shrubs.

In consultation with Lewisham council’s Green Scene department, the precise planting location and type  of the 6 trees will be agreed. The work will then be scheduled by Green Scene with onsite co-operation from local volunteers.

Initial indications are that the suitable sites are:  1 tree outside Toad’s Mouth cafĂ©.1 tree to be sited to continue the line of trees outside the Post Office sorting office towards the corner of Harefied and Brockley Road. 2 trees to be sited on the wide  section of pavement beyond the pedestrian crossing towards Cranfield Road and 2 trees to be planted before the pedestrian crossing on the new widened section of pavement. In consultation with Green Scene the tree pits will of a large enough area to allow for shrub and perennial plantings.

Site Plan of the Proposed Sites

With help from committed local environment groups, the area adjacent to the Station has been transformed from a run down, neglected and unwelcoming part of Brockley to a pleasant green environment. The new pavement area is not yet welcoming or green.  It is crying out for trees.  Brockley residents who have already expressed their appreciation of the greener environment around the station will all benefit from the addition of trees along this stretch of somewhat desolate pavement. At present cars can and often do mount the pavement to park.  Trees with guards will have the added benefit of protecting children and disabled pedestrians from such inconsiderate parking.

Trees opposite the Brockley Barge

Proposed tree on the corner of the Royal Mail sorting office
Proposed tree outside Toads Mouth Too


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