If you’re interested in what might happen next on the old Royal Mail sorting office site in Twickenham then there’s a public meeting where the developers will be giving feedback on their recent “community planning weekend”. It’s on Wednesday 25th April at 7.00pm at Richmond Adult Community College on Clifden Road. You’ll get the opportunity to find out just whether your concerns, considerations and contributions have been taken on board or quietly put in a box marked “Thanks for your time. Drive home safely”. The sorting office is a big site and one would expect that St James, the developer, is quite excited about all that lovely land in downtown ‘Nam. It’ll be interesting to see the next phase of the project and just how well it fits with what the locals might want and with El Brute’s Twickenham Action Plan, including options (or otherwise) for a yoof facility to replace Heatham House. [Note to developers: not ridiculously tall and no ice-rinks, thanks.]
Over in St Margarets there’s good news for those trying to keep Twickenham Film Studios as a hub for the film industry rather than seeing it turned into posh flats. Developer Taylor Wimpey has withdrawn its bid for the site. The company’s regional land and planing director is quoted in the Richmond & Twickenham Times as saying: “We have recently been advised that a number of potential bids have come forward to run the studios as a going concern. Should these bids be successful we consider this to be the most preferable option. As a responsible developer who is committed to working with the local community and stakeholders, we have decided to formally withdraw our bid for this site”. The fate of the studios is still very uncertain but some of the most immediate pressure seems to have lifted to allow commercial proposals to be worked through. It’s a good result for the Save Twickenham Studios campaign.
And elsewhere on the development front, the new block of flats that is replacing the old DSS building on Heath Road is nearly complete as indeed are Lionel Blair’s retirement flats on the Green. In the latter case we assume they’ll be called something appropriate like “Sunset Court” or perhaps, as a tribute to the veteran entertainer himself, “Dundancin”.