Labour end cinema dream for Coronet

Questions by Eltham Conservative Councillor Spencer Drury have revealed that new plans to set up a gym in the Well Hall Coronet signal the end of promises to reinstate any type of cinema in the building.

The rebuilding of the Coronet Cinema site was based upon a clear commitment that alongside flats and shops, a new cinema screen would be provided for the community and the building itself remains surrounded by boards advertising a new cinema for the site.  However, in a reply to Spencer, the Council stated:


“When planning permission was originally granted in 2009 as part of the mixed use redevelopment of the site it was proposed to provide education facilities at the site, which had the potential to be also to be utilised as a community cinema facility.  If the current application is approved then this part of the 2009 approved scheme would not be implemented.”

Spencer has maintained consistent pressure on the Labour Council over its failure to complete the development at the Coronet, has pointed out in the past that the Council seemed to have signed a contract which allowed the flats to be completed without work on the cinema being started – something which he doubted would have happened in Council developments in Woolwich.


Another sign of the worrying neglect of this development was revealed following complaints from local residents to Spencer when he attended the Greenwich Pensioners’ Forum that Tesco customers were making parking outside their homes difficult and sometimes worrying people waiting at the local bus stop (as cars pull on to the pavement beside it).  Spencer wrote to the Council and established recently that the requirement to provide 19 parking spaces for customers of the new Tesco in the Well Hall Parade had simply been ignored by both developers and the Council. 


Spencer said “While I am in danger of becoming a broken record on this issue, this is another sign of how little this Woolwich based Labour Council values any part of the borough south of Shooters Hill Road.  I simply do not believe that they would have signed such a poor deal or allowed this dereliction to continue in Woolwich.” 


“I hope that the new gym goes ahead, as it will restore life to this empty building but I feel betrayed that the Council promised one thing when giving permission for the whole development and has simply failed to ensure that the cinema is built.  There is simply no vision for the south of the borough other than as a cash cow to support the Labour Party’s activities in Woolwich.”