The PowerPoint presentation shown at the service

St James’s Church in Bermondsey held a special celebration on Sunday to mark the completion of £600,000 of restoration works to the historic building.

The Mayor of Southwark, Cllr Catherine Rose, was among the special guests at the event.

St James’s vicar Canon Gary Jenkins shares more detail and photos on his blog here and here.

Mayor of London Sadiq Khan has defended plans to build a bridge across the Thames linking Rotherhithe with Canary Wharf.

Mr Khan was speaking at the People’s Question Time event in Bexley on Thursday night where he was challenged from the floor about plans for a “£400 million vanity bridge” at Rotherhithe.

The Mayor said: “I don’t apologise for wanting to make sure that we have a cycle and pedestrian bridge at Canary Wharf and Rotherhithe.

“Actually it was one of the campaigns that Caroline Pidgeon talked about during the mayoral campaign.

“I was initially not sure of my views but was persuaded during the mayoral campaign that it was a good idea.

“We have worked cross-party to get this scheme up and running.”

Liberal Democrat London Assembly member Caroline Pidgeon said: “It’s so important for pedestrians and cyclists to be able to cross the Thames.

“At the moment on this side of London you have a choice: you go through the Rotherhithe Tunnel – literally taking your life into your own hands – or you have to trek further east and go through the Greenwich Foot Tunnel.

“We need to make sure that people can get across the Thames in a healthy, safe way.

“I think this is a fantastic project and it will be a real triumph for London to see a brand new bridge at that location.”

This week we reported that Canary Wharf Group is opposing the bridge and favours an improved ferry service instead.

The owners of Canary Wharf have criticised plans for a bridge across the Thames linking the Isle of Dogs with Rotherhithe.

Canary Wharf Group’s hostility to the scheme has been known for some time but is now a matter of public record thanks to the firm’s submission to the London Plan examination in public currently being held at City Hall

“We are concerned about the proposed walk and cycle river crossing between Rotherhithe and Canary Wharf,” says CWG in its written statement on transport schemes in London.

“This is a very expensive and environmentally intrusive scheme and we believe the significantly cheaper ferry proposal should be properly considered as a more viable and attractive (to users) proposition.

“With public finances heavily constrained, it is vital that investment in infrastructure is spent wisely on the most important, beneficial and deliverable initiatives.”

Last month Mayor of London Sadiq Khan said: “Transport for London (TfL) is continuing to develop the scheme, including aspects of design, construction and operation of this important new crossing.

“As part of this, TfL is engaging directly with a number of stakeholders, including the Port of London Authority, London boroughs, land owners and local community groups.

“This work is helping to develop greater detail on the scheme, which TfL will share as part of a formal public consultation, which is currently planned to launch in spring 2019.”

In its London Plan EIP submission, Canary Wharf also argues that greater capacity is needed on the Jubilee line in order to meet future demand.

The Bramcote Estate in South Bermondsey is one of 11 areas around the capital to receive a share of the Mayor of London and Transport for London’s £53.4 million Liveable Neighbourhoods funding.

Southwark Council bid for the funding from City Hall and TfL.

The scheme at the Bramcote Estate will reduce car use by make walking and cycling much easier for local residents and connect the area with the future Cycleway 4 and Old Kent Road.

Roads will be closed to through traffic, junctions re-designed and streets made easier to cross on foot. Links will also be improved to the Deptford Parks Liveable Neighbourhood, for which Lewisham Council was awarded funding last year.

Further details of the project are available in this report.

Transport for London and Southwark Council have launched a public consultation on revised plans for the Jamaica Road / Southwark Park Road / West Lane junction in connection with the new cycle superhighway.

The new plans include banning the right turn out of Southwark Park Road on to Jamaica Road for all traffic except buses, taxis and cyclists. 

“This is in response to safety and congestion concerns raised regarding additional strategic traffic using Southwark Park Road to access Rotherhithe Tunnel,” says TfL.

The public consultation continues till Tuesday 2 April.

A £2 an hour charge for car parking is to be introduced in Southwark Park from 1 April this year.

Southwark Council hopes to raise £200,000 a year by introducing car parking charges in the borough’s open spaces.

There are 90 car parking spaces in Southwark Park. At present, car parking is free but there is a four-hour time limit.

The new parking charge will be payable by phone, text or app.

As part of the same package of measures, the council is planning to spend £28,000 on resurfacing and drainage works at Southwark Park, as well as installing new signage to advise motorists of the charges and how to pay.

Further details are available in this report.

Southwark Council has served an enforcement notice on the owners of the Old Justice Pub on Bermondsey Wall East after work was carried out on the grade II listed building.

Meanwhile applications for planning permission (19/AP/0438) and listed building consent (19/AP/0439) have now been submitted to the council for works to create a roof extension to accommodate a new flat.

West Midlands Police image used under a Creative Commons licence

52 motorists received warning letters from the Metropolitan Police after volunteers taking part in a police scheme used speed guns to detect drivers breaking the limit in Salter Road last June.

Details of the Community Roadwatch operations were obtained by SE16.com under the Freedom of Information Act.

A letter from the Met’s Supt Thomas Naughton is sent to the registered keeper of vehicles found speeding, reminding car owners that around 2,000 people a year are killed or seriously injured on London’s roads each year, with speed a contributory factor in half of these collisions.

“The local community asks that drivers passing through the area observe the posted speed limits,” says Supt Naughton in his letter.

“Reducing your speed will directly contribute to saving lives and will improve the quality of life for those residents.

“No further action will be taken on this occasion but this report will be held on our records for 12 months. If your vehicle comes to notice again it will be investigated further.”

If the same vehicle is found speeding a second time, a further letter is sent warning that “the vehicle details have now been entered onto police intelligence records and they will also be passed to our Criminal Justice Unit for entry onto their databases.

“If the vehicle is seen offending again, it will be added to the Automatic Number Plate Recognition (ANPR) hotlist.

“This will alert all patrolling roads policing units to the presence of the vehicle and it might be stopped and checked. In cases of persistent or extreme speeding, vehicles may be targeted for enforcement by police officers or mobile speed camera vans.”

Cllr Jasmine Ali, cabinet member for children, schools and adult care, was joined by Neil Coyle MP for Bermondsey and Old Southwark, to mark the official opening of Albion Primary School.

Albion Primary School now has capacity for 420 pupils after the school was completely rebuilt.

Next month the council’s cabinet will award a contract for the construction of new homes on part of the former school site, with work due to start next year.

Making the most of every bit of space available was central to the redesign of the school and this extends to the roof. There is a new, fully accessible, roof terrace with an artificial grass playing pitch, which will be used as a further outdoor learning space but doubles as a play area.

Cllr Jasmine Ali, cabinet member for children, schools and adult care, said: “One of the real stand-out successes of Southwark Council’s investments into local schools is that education teams have been able to create schools that fit their needs. At Albion Primary School, pupils and staff have a school that works for them. The school is really impressive and the investments from Southwark Council has helped provide an excellent space to teach and learn. Alongside the quality of the school, which has been recognised by industry bodies, there are now more, much needed primary school places. Thanks to the expansion of the school, I am pleased to say that Albion will now be able to welcome 210 more pupils through its gates.”

Karl Bardouille, headteacher of Albion Primary School, said: “Albion has worked closely with Southwark Council and the architects to ensure our children have the best possible facilities .We wanted to ensure that the new school would give the children bigger classrooms, a more accessible building and more common areas that would ensure the best opportunities to deliver our creative curriculum. We are all delighted with the extra teaching and learning space that will help us live up to our motto ‘Learn to do Well’”.