Update 6 March 2021

This update is in a rather lower key than some of the more recent ones because there are no dramatic developments on the three big planning battles

We haven’t heard any decisions regarding planning appeals about the radio masts planned on top of Monmouth House, nor the additional storey on top of the Stay Club in Holmes Road. 

Nor have we heard a decision by Camden’s planning department regarding the application by Segro to convert the warehouse premises in Spring Place to be a 24 hour a day, seven day a week distribution centre. 

The response from the community about that application has been amazing. Click on this link to see that we have over 500 objections which is more than we have ever heard of before.

Click here to View Application

The other big planning matter is the Murphy’s site.  
Just to repeat, if you go to the top of the town, past the station and the canopy, then all the land behind the shops on the left as you go up Highgate Road belongs to Murphy’s, right up to the top on Gordon House Road which is virtually on the Heath. 
This is a massive area of development and many people have been involved with consultation meetings. There will be further consultation apparently, early next week and we will come back to people with links for that. 
In the meantime, the crucial issue is the fact that their plans means that the view from the top of the High Street, over the railway bridge and out towards Hampstead heath will be seriously compromised – in fact pretty largely blocked. 
There was a meeting recently with four people from Kentish Town Road Action (two of us IARA members) with top people in Murphy’s. They told us that they were respecting this view although later they admitted that in fact only 1/4 of it would still be retained. The rest would be blocked. 
We will try and get illustrative pictures showing what it looks like now and what it will look like later if these plans are allowed to go ahead. 
Subject to feedback from members we may be asking for a campaign to raise objections 


We are getting a steady flow of warnings about various scams that people need to be alert for. Most of these warnings come through the WhatsApp group which is now over 80 people and very lively – some people may think too lively! 
If you want to join, please just send us your phone number and your address and we can add you. 
The most recent warning has been from Harriet: 
Alert! I’ve just had a landline call from a man claiming to be a detective from KT police station. He told me £350 towards an air fare had gone from my debit account & to check no cards were lost/stolen. He wanted my post code (I must have told him this so he knew which police station). When I asked him for an ID number the line went cold & his phone number unrecorded. I’m posting this as it all sounded quite plausible initially… 

New website postings – walks and history 

We are putting a little bit more work into the website with a guide to local parks and green areas which we hope to expand into a guide to recommended walks, which can involve just street walks.  

This is the link:  https://www.inkermanresidents.org.uk/walks/walks-from-the-inkerman-area    Some of them are pretty obvious but maybe not to people who may have come to the area recently. Indeed, we heard of a long-term resident who had never been to Regents Park.  

Contributions and suggestions very welcome. 
We are also gradually building up the history section and we have a new member (new to IARA but having lived here for many years) who has relevant experience and is interested in working on this subject, and we hope to get the History Group going again. Please email us if you are interested. Possibly a Zoom group or a separate WhatsApp group? 

Transition Kentish Town 

We picked this up from the regular newsletter (which you can get by emailing  info@transitionkentishtown.org.uk 

“We are thrilled to announce that a pilot Library of Things is coming to Kentish Town this spring. Soon you’ll be able to pop into Kentish Town Library to borrow useful household items like drills, carpet cleaners and gazebos. Library of Things allows you to borrow items from as little as £1 per day, before returning them for another neighbour to use. Want to be one of the first to borrow? Find out more and sign up to hear first: libraryofthings.co.uk/kentishtown.” 

Camden High Line 

Some of you will be aware of the plans to open up the Camden High Line – a walk/cycle way from Kings Cross to Camden – described here: 

“The Camden Highline will turn a disused stretch of railway viaduct into a new elevated park and walking route, connecting Camden Gardens in the west to York Way in the east. It will be a space that people will be inspired by, learn from and enjoy, with seating areas, cafés, public art and charitable activities.” 

If you want to know more, you can sign up for a Q&A next Thursday 11 March: 

On Thursday 11th March at 17:30 we are hosting a Q&A event with the winners of the design competition. This is your opportunity to meet the design team and the people behind the competition process.  
Sign up to the event here! 

Noise Complaints 
Some of you may be interested in this – a survival guide about dealing with noise: 

I am a resident of King’s Cross / Bloomsbury and a member of a number of community groups concerned with planning, traffic, green spaces, and local democracy. I am also a freelance journalist and writer.  

I am using my skills and experience to write a Camden Survival Guide to help communities deal with many of Camden Council’s notorious problems, including noise nuisances, planning, consultation, litter, general complaints, and other issues. I have spent many hours working with council officers, meeting with managers, heads of departments, and councillors, and would like to share these experiences with everyone for the greater good. 

I have just finished writing the first instalment, on Camden Noise Complaints, to help people get noise nuisances properly investigated. 

Independent Elders of IARA 
We are a group of about 20, very open and informal and no age limit (up or down!).  We meet on a slightly ad hoc basis about every 6 weeks and currently by zoom.  We share information and ideas, and sometimes flag up issues for IARA to follow up with the council or others.  If you would like to be on the Elders mailing list let us know. 

At our recent meeting a couple of people recommended exercise groups – Julia sent in this about an online class James does: 

These 30-minute classes are held twice a week. They include mobility, muscle strength, cardio-vascular, balance and stretching exercises as well as a bit of Tai Qi. The structure and aims of the classes are to enhance wellbeing, confidence and independence; to make activities of everyday living easier.  When you join, each exercise will be tailored to your needs and fitness level. Any level of current fitness is welcome. Please feel free to contact me to discuss this further. Diana Gore 07770 467684 diana@walkwellbeing.com 

And Harriet added a recommendation for Pilates: 
Beginners Pilates Zooms with Laura Caro.  Happy to accept anyone on Weds am @ 9.45am. In normal times she teaches classes @ KTSports Centre.  People can reach her on 07767764525 

If you’d like to know more let us know and we can put you in touch with James and/or Harriet (NB they are not free classes).  

And finally, some sad news.  Many of you will have known Dot Fraser – some of us older residents whose children were taught music by her, and some through the music shop she set up, Dots, in Royal College Street.  We are very sorry to tell you that she has died, following a massive stroke.  If you would like to know more, get in touch.

It’s always great to get feedback on these updates.  If you have any comments or suggestions, please let us know.