Dear fellow Wickers & Fish Islanders – URGENT note – please take a minute to read:
2800 new living units in HWFI over the next years ? Save HWFI !
As you might or might not know, the London Legacy Development Corporation is currently drafting a ‘Local Plan’ that sets the guidelines for all existing and future development of HWFI , replacing the local council as a planning authority. There was a well-attended hearing on the plan a few weeks ago (see previous post).. but this left many quite cynical: the LLDP people seemed to be somewhat resigned, their answers on maintaining the areas character and Live/Work were vague and evasive.

HWFI will change substantially over the next years with many planning applications pending and some already granted. But the question is to what extent and HOW it will change. The LLDC has to balance the interests of the GLA, the land owners, the local community.. ,but they can only take our point of view into account if we weigh in. If YOU weigh in , that is. Every email that is sent in has to be recognized and will count and they seem to be willing to fight our corner to some extent, but it will need our engagement.
The initial consultation ends TOMORROW, the 7th of February. There will then be a later consulation stage, so you can still write in after tomorrow, but this is the crucial one as the basic guidelines are being set).

No worries though, it’s very easy and will take only 5 minutes of your time !
The CIGs (Cultural Interest Group) Development Sub Committee has done great work already and ploughed through the 230-page strong Plan, giving direct feedback to the LLDC. Richard Brown has summarized their recommendations below.

Our suggestion:
1) Compose email to by Friday night.
2) Subject Line: “Comments on the Local Plan Consultation Document”
3) State your name and address.
4) Copy and paste the text at the bottom of this message(feel free to edit)

These are very basic recommendations that we hope everyone can agree on.
If you are interested, get in touch and we can send you a document with more detailed recommendations by the Subgroup.
And of course, we encourage you to read through it yourself and feedback:

Apologies for the last minute notice, but we feel it’s essential for as many of us to show colours and email in. This might be the single best opportunity to weigh in on HWFI development.
Please share this with your friends and network and encourage them to write in. We’ll set up a meeting in the next weeks, summarizing all current developments for everybody (also on the Conservation Zone), engaging in discussions enabling us to be proactive.

Tobias Hug & Richard Brown


“I believe that the development of the Local Plan provides an excellent opportunity to foster a creative, affordable and sustainable neighbourhood. As detailed below, I think the current Draft does not appropriately address some of the key issues concerning the future of the area. I would like to see greater emphasis in policies that work towards the sustainability of an affordable ecology that over the years has allowed the development of a thriving artistic and cultural scene spanning several generations of practitioners.

‘Live/Work’ Typology

The ‘unofficial’ Live/Work hybrid typology must be acknowledged and supported within the local plan. Live work in HWFI, is an affordable solution for young practitioners and graduates to find time and space to develop resilient creative businesses. It is the responsibility of the LLDC to engage with the issue of how this ‘unofficial’ typology is managed and supported.

Live-Work should form a key component of Strategic policy for Sp.2 Housing and Sp.1 business, economy and employment in sub area 1.

The Built Environment

Development proposals within sub area 1 should respond to the local character, Local Character is defined not just by the skin deep I.e. brick, but by the diverse mix of uses and spatial adjacencies in the yards of the many industrial estates. It is important that any influx of residential use, sensitively respect this context of intimacy and diversity.

The height restriction of 2-6 storeys is strongly supported, however the exceptions to this rule must be clearer, what are exceptional circumstances.

Please use the evidence gathered in the ‘Hackney Wick and Fish Island design and planning guidance’ as well as Richard Brown’s ‘HWFI Creative Factories’ to inform what defines ‘local context’ within SP.3: The built Environment and SP.4: The Historic Environment

Affordable & Managed Workspace

PolicyBEE.6 (Affordable & Managed Workspace) should apply to all areas of HWFI.
Appropriate management for affordable workspace should be a planning requirement at the early stages of design, to ensure appropriate fit out, management strategies and rental costs.
This should not be left for post planning s106 agreement.

Management of affordable workspace should not be limited to larger studio providers, HW&FI is home to many independent studio manager providers, who are part of a long term community in the area.

The interim use of vacant land/buildings for affordable workspace should be encouraged, preferably on a long term basis 3-5 years.”

Also, if you are happy for the comment to be seen on their website, please state : “I agree for my comments to be public”

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