The Norwood Society are set to object to plans by Croydon council to build ‘infill’ homes on the Auckland Rise estate.
The estate, which runs from the top of Church Road opposite the school playing fields of All Saints C of E primary school down to Auckland Road where it faces St John’s church, was praised by Nikolaus Pevsner, the renowned art and architecture historian, in his book ‘The Buildings of England; London South” as “good housing taking advantage of the trees on the site.”

Residents are organising a public meeting at St John’s church this Thursday (26th) at 7pm.

Croydon council put in an application 16/06512/FUL on December 23rd for the site – described on the application as “Parcels Of land adjacent to Auckland Rise, Church Road And Sylvan Hill London SE19 2DX”

The application is for the proposed demolition of buildings (unspecified) and erection of seven buildings varying between three and four storeys in height comprising 29 two bedroom and 28 one bedroom flats. provision of associated car parking, landscaping and other associated works.

In the latest issue of the Society’s magazine the Norwood Review, Philip Goddard, chairman of the society’s planning committee, says: “The new proposals for a large increase in building density, with significant loss of trees and open space, will effectively ruin this.

“Since the developers, Brick by Brick, are an arm of Croydon council permission will certainly be granted and the public consultation is no more than a formal exercise.”

Of the 57 new homes 38 would be for market sale and 19 for shared ownership as “affordable” housing. There would be 34 extra car parking spaces and 80 new cycle parking spaces.

The plans – taken from the planning statement in the application – describe six different plots:

Plot A comprises a four storey building to the west of the site, containing a total of 16 flats. This includes 9 x one bedroom and 7 x 2 bedroom flats. (infill block fronting Church Road to the left of 283 – 337 and in front of 339 – 369 )

The building will be accessed by vehicles from Church Road and will sit adjacent to existing blocks of flats and will form a perimeter corner block, enclosing a landscaped courtyard. The four storey block complements the scale of neighbouring buildings and creates a stronger corner sign-posting a pedestrian gateway into the estate and route down the hill. Proposed balconies are both recessed and integral to the building, with alternating balconies projecting forwards.

Plot B comprises a building which ranges from four to six storeys in heights, containing a total of 16 flats. This includes 2 x one bedroom flats and 14 x two bedroom flats. (block to the right of 26 to 48 and very close to the rear of 66 to 88)

The four storey element complements the scale of neighbouring buildings, whilst the building rises up to six storeys at the northern part of the estate which responds to the rising hillside and taller buildings under construction of up to 11 storeys directly to the north. Balconies are again recessed and integral to the building, with alternating balconies projecting forward. This site will be accessed from Sylvan Hill.

Plot C1 and C2 comprises two infill street fronting blocks, side-by-side, slightly angled towards each other. The buildings will contain 12 units, which includes 4 x one bedroom flats and 8 x two bedroom flats. The alignment of the buildings will give a continuous street frontage to Auckland Rise. (two blocks to the left of 14 to 24)

Plot D contains two separate, pavilion style, buildings, up to three storeys in height, which will front onto Auckland Rise and contain 6 x one bedroom flats. The buildings will front onto Auckland Rise. (opposite 14 to 24 and 2 to 12 and very near to Auckland Road)

Plot E comprises one building, up to four storeys in height, with a terrace at the rear orientated to the south. The building will contain 4 x one bedroom flats. It is located towards the higher end of the Auckland Rise cul-de-sac.

Plot F comprises one building, containing 3 x one bedroom flats.

*Editor’s note: Since this article was published, News From Crystal Palace has learnt that several AMENDED reports supporting the application have been submitted. To see the full revised application please go to planning and search ‘Auckland Rise’ under the applications list.

Of the 707 windows tested for VSC (Vertical Sky Component), all but 61 (nine per cent) will meet the criteria as set out in the BRE guide, says a consultants report. 

“Transgressions are noted to the following properties. 54 – 64 Sylvan Hill (3 windows); 66 – 88 Sylvan Hill (6 windows); 2 – 12 Auckland Rise (4 windows); 14-24 Auckland Rise (12 windows); 26 – 48 Auckland Rise (4 windows); 339 – 369 Auckland Rise (23 windows); and 371 – 425 Auckland Rise (9 windows).”

In their report the consultants state: “The windows identified within the daylighting assessment that fall short of the criteria are all deemed to be either secondary in nature or have projecting balconies above the window.

“In addition, the existing levels of daylight are extremely good in some locations making the effect appear worse as proposed levels will exceed BRE (Building Research Establishment)target values even though the levels remain above 19 per cent in all instances.”

Note: News From Crystal Palace has yet to find the consultants BRE figures for daylight figures in the proposed new buildings. There are 87 documents associated with this application.

Croydon’s Brick by Brick scheme is one of a number of schemes set up Labour-controlled councils to tackle what they see as a housing crisis.

Croydon council, on its website, say: “To achieve Croydon’s goal of 1,000 high quality new homes across the borough by 2019, the council has like several other forward thinking boroughs set up its own development company, Brick by Brick.

“Brick by Brick is a private, independent company, with the council acting as sole shareholder.

“It aims to deliver high quality, new, residential-led development on a range of sites across the borough. “As well as being able to make sure the borough fully benefits from land value uplift and development returns, Brick by Brick will be able to deliver directly and act quickly to new opportunities in the market place.

“The aim of Brick by Brick is to ensure people in Croydon have access to high quality and affordable housing.

“It also means that the full value of development growth is kept in the borough – whether it be in the form of additional affordable housing, physical improvements in the local centres or dividend return to the council to fund council services.”

In a ‘Frequently Asked Questions’ part of the statement the council also say:
“New affordable and private for sale properties will be delivered as the council aims to transform and accelerate the delivery of new homes and improve the housing stock across the borough….

“The proposed sites have been identified through a review of all council owned sites across the borough and then subject to a ‘due diligence’ technical checking process to assess their suitability for new homes.”

How can I find out if a site near to me is affected?
If you live within circa 50 metres of a site, you will be notified initially by a letter from the council. Also, you can search the sites on our website

What will happen to any profits made?

“Any development profits will be returned to the council as shareholder and recycled to fund council activities.”

How will the housing type e.g. affordable be determined?
“The council and the company’s objective is that 50 per cent of the overall programme will be affordable homes and 50 per cent private homes for sale. “This will vary from site to site.

“In accordance with the Croydon Local Plan, 60pc of the affordable homes will be for rent and 40pc for shared ownership in the programme overall; although this will also vary from site to site.”

Further reading: House building company Brick by Brick submits first planning applications November 22, 2016 press release / Your Croydon

NEW HOMES PLANNED ON SYLVAN HILL ESTATE – But Croydon won’t be demolishing any existing ones News From Crystal Palace July 07, 2016

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