9 April 2024 | City Plan Partial Review: Grosvenor Sidings

Grosvenor Sidings boundary

Click to enlarge Image from the City Plan Partial Review (Consultation)

Westminster City Council is undertaking a partial review of the City Plan and this has reached the consultation stage

The review is looking at 3 specific topics: Affordable Housing, Retrofit First and “Site Allocations” which has policies for sites proposed for future development which have been suggested by the relevant land owners.

Crucially for Pimlico (and Churchill Gardens) there is a proposed site allocation for “Grosvenor Sidings”: two plots of railway land between Ebury Bridge and the Thames on either side of the tracks which run over the river. The two plots lie entirely in the Pimlico Neighbourhood Area.

The Council’s consultation is here: https://www.westminster.gov.uk/planning-building-control-and-environmental-regulations/planning-policy/city-plan-partial-review. Warning: there are many very large documents. The most relevant documents for Grosvenor Sidings are:

  • Regulation 19 City Plan (Chapter 11, page 71-76);  
  • Grosvenor Sidings Design Review Panel Report;
  • Site Allocations Heritage Impacts Assessments report and
  • Integrated Impacts Assessment document (including Appendix VIII and Appendix IX)

The consultation period concludes on 25 April 2024 and the Council’s “Regulation 19 consultation portalcan be accessed on: https://cityplanpartialreview.commonplace.is/

The Steering Group is working on a consultation response from Pimlico Neighbourhood Forum to ensure that if a development proposal comes forward, it should respect policies in the Pimlico Neighbourhood Plan — especially those policies regarding height of new buildings, and the effect on the protected views out of Pimlico and Peabody Avenue Conservation Areas. Development also needs to integrate well with existing adjacent uses in Pimlico and to provide public realm, as the Plan specifies for major developments.

6 March 2024 | Pimlico Strategic Group and Pimlico Community Conversations

A “Pimlico Strategic Group” has been set up by Westminster City Council. This is about the services that the Council and its partners deliver and how they can join up and do things better.

Pimlico Neighbourhood Forum has been invited to join the Group with several other local organisations. It isn’t entirely clear what the focus of the group will be, but the initial process is as follows

The Council has set up a website and is holding some meetings to find out about what matters to people in Pimlico (Pimlico South and Pimlico North wards):

  • Queen Mother Sports Centre on 7th March, 6–8pm. You can register for this HERE.
  • Bessborough Centre on the 12th March, 12:30am to 1:30pm. Register HERE.

As you can see, the deadline for this part of the exercise is very short – up to 15th March.

Please give any feedback directly on their website https://pimlicocommunityconversations.commonplace.is/  There is a map that you can click on to make comments about an area or spot and a short questionnaire.

The Forum will put forward views and information based on the work done for the Pimlico Neighbourhood Plan, but we also encourage members to respond to the Council’s initiative.

8 November 2023 | Report on the recent Pimlico Neighbourhood Forum Annual General Meeting

All PNF members (plus guests from neighbouring Forums or residents’ associations) were invited on the 24 October 2023 at St Saviours Hall for the AGM

After the success of the referendum approving the Pimlico Neighbourhood Plan in September 2022, It was a lively and positive meeeting focussing on the way forward with Westminster City Council about current issues.

Here are the draft minutes of the meeting and the papers which were previously made available to Forum members:

  1. Agenda
  2. Minutes of the 5th October 2021 AGM
  3. 2023 Annual Report
  4. 2022-2023 Accounts


8 September 2023 | The Forum is still quite busy!

Planning applications, Queen Mother Sports Centre, Warwick Way / Churton Street

Since the Spring, the Forum has been responding to a small number of planning applications, to ensure that the Pimlico Neighbourhood Plan is taken into account in Westminster and Planning Inspectorate decisions. At this stage, we are focussing on those issues where policies in the Plan and the Vision are most relevant. It also enables us to get experience as to how the planning decisions are taken in practice. So we have responded on two cases involving retrospective consent for change of use or potentially noisy machinery as well as an application for House in Multiple Occupation use in a property more suited to less intensive residential use.

We have also engaged with Vitcorp (the owners of the Wilton Road section of the Queen Mother Sports Centre block) to hear about their plan. These are clearly at a very early stage and the Council has also said that its investment funds for sports facilities are fully committed elsewhere. We continue to monitor the situation carefully. It is crucial that the Pimlico Neighbourhood Plan policies, regarding use and height of development are respected in any future developments on this block.

Finally, we were deeply disappointed that the Council removed the alfresco public realm and traffic arrangements in Warwick Way starting in  3rd April 2023, due to a technical legal challenge by someone outside the Pimlico Neighbourhood area, making the Summer more difficult for businesses, residents and other people in Pimlico. The Council is still keen to develop a permanent scheme for the area and we are now expecting a Statutory Traffic Management Order consultation – and then hopefully start of the work for a much improved public realm in time for Summer 2024!

15 April 2023 | What does the Pimlico Neighbourhood Plan say about the Queen Mother Sports Centre? 

  • Westminster City Council and any promoters must ensure that any development of the Queen Mother Sports Centre and within the surrounding block is not too tall and doesn’t represent “creep” from Victoria (Pimlico Neighbourhood Plan Policy PIM 10 covers building heights).
  • The existing role of the Queen Mother Sports Centre as a community leisure
    facility should be retained. Redevelopment proposals must ensure that the
    leisure facility continues to serve the local community and meet Westminsterʼs needs (Policy PIM 23).
  • The surrounding terrace in Upper Tachbrook Street (in the Pimlico Conservation Area) and the listed terrace on Gillingham Street must be preserved or enhanced (Policy PIM 23).
  • Proposals should explore opportunities to deliver a permanent public pedestrian route through from Wilton Road to Vauxhall Bridge Road, the provision of accessible open space and/or improvements to the public realm in Wilton Road itself (Policy PIM 23). 

Full details of these and other policies are in the Pimlico Neighbourhood Plan.