Talks with residents progress on future of Carpenters Estate

11 February 2019 in Housing and Mayor and Regeneration
The Mayor of Newham met with residents of the Carpenters Estate last week to progress discussions on the future of the area. 
On Wednesday 30 January, Mayor Fiaz and officers from across the local authority met with residents. This is the second meaningful conversation the Mayor has had with residents and is part of a comprehensive programme of engagement to inform and shape future proposals.

Community involvement plans were discussed with residents who had the opportunity to give their feedback and direct the future programme as part of the council’s new co-production approach where residents are at the heart.

Over the next 12 months, residents will be invited to a series of workshops exploring the range of masterplanning elements, which will inform any final outcomes. Topics for discussion will include community priorities and successful neighbourhoods, shaping development including housing, neighbourhood character and identity, as well as safety on the estate.

The council’s engagement approach will also involve door knocking to speak to residents who may not be able to attend the workshops and contacting those residents who have moved away from the estate.

The conversations with residents will look at short term, medium term and long term solutions to reviving the Carpenters Estate, with an immediate focus on what short term measures can be put in place to make improvements now. Some of the short term improvements residents requested included: better lighting, security camera and better management of fans coming through the estate on match days.

For medium term solutions, the councils and residents will explore and implement the physical improvements which can be made in the next nine to 18 months. For long term solutions, the council will work with residents on the future strategy for the estate.

Proctor and Matthews Architects attended the meeting to present some potential meanwhile uses for the estate to make it a better place to live in the short-term. These included social spaces, improvements to sports facilities, gardening and planting projects and signage.

Next steps will be to procure an organisations who will help provide those residents who are interested with training and capacity building to equip them with the skills so they can fully understand the masterplanning process and work in collaboration with the council.

Volunteers were also sought to be part of a group to represent the interests of the Carpenters Estate community. a decision based on the preferences of the majority of residents will be made at the next meeting which will be held in February, to decide whether this group will be a refresh of the existing steering group or an entirely new group.

Mayor Fiaz brought the joint venture process started under the previous administration to an end in December 2018. Any future proposals must include a minimum of 50 per cent genuine affordable housing and will be in line with the Mayor of London’s Good Practice Guide to Estate Regeneration. This means any proposals will require a mandatory ballot of residents.

Mayor Fiaz said: “This is a new vastly different approach to what has gone before and I want to be clear I have not made any decision regarding the future of the Carpenters Estate. This process will set out what residents want to see for the future of the estate and through meaningful engagement and conversations, together we will deliver a truly resident led masterplan.

“This kind of collaborative co-production has already proven to be a success in Custom House with PEACH, an organisation led by the local community who are actively involved in making regeneration decisions alongside the council.

“I recognise it will take time to build up trust with residents and this is going to be a difficult and long process. There are still some issues on the estate which I am working with officers to resolve as soon as possible. However, it was great to see so many residents taking an active interest and share my priority in making the Carpenters Estate a better place to live. I am committed to standing shoulder to shoulder with residents and I look forward to working with them to deliver a proposal that truly works for the local community.”