News from around Blackheath Westcombe

An update from Blackheath Westcombe Conservative Councillor Rhodri Harris.

Cuts to grass cutting


Rhodri Harris has complained to the Council about the failure of Cleansweep to keep the grass cut in housing estates throughout the ward during the summer.


“Before the grass cutting service was, for ideological reasons removed from private contractors and placed with the Council’s direct services operation, is was cut every other week.  This year, many areas have been lucky to have two cuts from April to October.


“I’ve had complaints from Webb Road, Westcombe Park Road, the Kidbrooke Park Estate, Pond Pond, Tom Smith Close and Beaconsfield Close.  Residents pay service charges for this and it’s simply not good enough” he said.

Pram sheds unsafe


Rhodri is pressing the Council to demolish the derelict pram sheds in Beaconsfield Close. “Boarding them up, as the Council has done, is unsightly and potentially dangerous if they are broken into by youngsters” he commented.

Mobile phone masts


Despite repeated requests from Rhodri and others, the Council still has not undertaken tests to establish the emission levels from the mobile telephone mast at the top of Westcombe Court.


Residents’ readings show the levels to exceed recommended levels substantially.  Rhodri has taken this up with the most senior Council officers as this is a potential risk to public health.

Where are the buses?


The 228 bus route to join Blackheath Village to Greenwich Town, sought by Conservative Councillors for years, is still not operating despite repeated assurances by Transport for London.


“The local Labour MP, Labour GLA member and Labour Councillors all say they support this route too, so why do they seem to have no influence with their new party colleague, Labour mayor Ken Livingstone, who controls Transport for London?” Rhodri asked.

Shopping parade


Rhodri welcomes the Council’s review of the shopping parade at Rochester Way.  “The area is, frankly, an eyesore and the sooner we can find a way of improving it and persuading the shopkeepers to take some pride in it, the better” he said.

Restell development


Rhodri opposed the developer’s plans for Restell Close on the grounds of density, inadequate parking provision and the danger from traffic movements on Vanbrugh Hill.  Regrettably the Council approved the plans.



Rhodri is in discussion over the future management of the Woodlands, bounded by Ulundi Road, Restell Close, Maze Hill and Vanbrugh Hill, with its owners, the Blackheath Preservation Trust.


“The most important thing is to protect the interests of local residents, particularly those in Lasseter Place, Ulundi Road, Vanbrugh Castle, Maze Hill and Tom Smith Close, as well as the ecology of the Woodlands itself” he said.  “I hope that we can arrive at a solution satisfactory to all”.