Congratulations to the SE16 recipients of Southwark Civic Awards – including Barry Duckett of Rotherhithe Festival fame who received a lifetime achievement award. The same award was given to Peter Parfitt in recognition of his long service as a governor and reading volunteer at Peter Hills School.

At the same ceremony FA Albin & Sons Ltd were presented with a scroll to mark the fact that the company has been granted the freedom of the London Borough of Southwark.

Michael Caine, born at St Olave’s Hospital in SE16, was also present to receive his illuminated scroll.


The owners of Surrey Quays Shopping Centre have announced that work will start on an extension to the building in early 2013 with completion expected in mid-2014.

The centre is jointly owned by British Land and Tesco who plan to add 18 new shops and restaurants to the complex.

Southwark’s planning committee unanimously approved the extension plans in March but councillors turned down an application for a new double-decker car park.

“The approval for the Surrey Quays Shopping Centre extension is important for the wider regeneration of Canada Water and Rotherhithe and demonstrates our commitment to the area,” says David Pollock, retail development manager for British Land.

“The extension and refurbishment will create additional space that will allow us to attract and accommodate new and exciting retailers, ensuring that Surrey Quays remains competitive in today’s market

” The current shopping experience will be significantly improved for both existing and new customers.”


Developer Hollybrook Homes has submitted an application to Southwark Council for the conversion of the old Bermondsey Town Hall in Spa Road.

Conversion of Grade II listed building from B1 offices to provide 41 residential units (Use Class C3). Erection of a roof extension to the existing second floor and internal alterations; incorporating, addition of lightwells along the western boundary and external alterations to the car parking layout, refuse area and cycle parking with associated landscaping.  

Ref 12/AP/1424

Transport for London is considering whether it can reopen the public toilets at Canada Water station, says Simon Hughes MP.

The MP says a TfL source told him that the public toilets at the station were closed last year because of ‘safety concerns’.

However, Mr Hughes has discovered that although there was a report of a serious assault, the subsequent police investigation found this report to be false.

“I understand TfL’s reasons for closing the public toilets at Canada Water tube station a year ago,” he said.

“However, I do not think it is acceptable that they did not follow up with the local police to find out whether their safety concerns were legitimate.

“Directing commuters to use either the toilets in the Canada Water library or the toilets at Tesco Surrey Quays is far from ideal.

“I am pleased that TfL is reviewing their decision and as long as there are provisions in place to ensure that the public toilets are safe, I believe many people would be very relieved to see the toilets reopened.”

199 Rotherhithe New Road
This former printworks will be the school's final home but it won't be ready for September so the search is on for temporary premises

Southwark Free School, which plans to open in temporary premises this September before moving to its permanent home in Rotherhithe New Road, has extended its application period until 25 May.

The two-form entry primary school hopes to attract interest from parents of children who last week learned that their application to Southwark Council for a local school place had been unsuccessful.

Southwark Free School is planning to open with 60 children in reception and will eventually accommodate up to 420 children as well as up to 60 nursery places. It will be on the site of the old print works at 399 Rotherhithe New Road, although it will initially open in temporary accommodation nearby.

“We are committed to providing an outstanding new primary school in Southwark,” says Patrick Shine, chair of Southwark Free School Trust.

“We are delighted to be able to offer parents more choice and greater access to high quality education provision, particularly in light of the current shortage of primary school places.

“Southwark Free School will lie at the heart of the community and will be a place where all children will benefit from a first class education. Our application process is now open and we are keen to hear from any parents interested in finding out more about the school.”

To give people the opportunity to find out more about the school and what it hopes to achieve interim head teacher Geri Askin will be available to talk to parents at the following locations:

  • Outside Thorowgood’s Furniture Store, Southwark Park Road Monday to Friday from 1pm to 3pm
  • Outside Asda on the Old Kent Road every Monday from 10am to 12 noon
  • Outside Tesco at Surrey Quays on Saturday 28 April from 9.30am to 6pm

Further details of the application process can be found at

TfL and Olympics organisers have published their latest assessment of the impact of the games on the capital’s transport network

Trains passing through Canada Water Underground station will be much busier during the Games due to the Jubilee line services already being full with spectators travelling to and from events at ExCeL, North Greenwich Arena and the Olympic Park.

It will be very difficult to board Jubilee line trains at this station at the busiest times, especially in the morning and evening.

via Canada Water | Get Ahead of the Games.

Bermondsey station will be exceptionally busy in the morning peak between 7-11am. It will be very difficult to board eastbound Jubilee line trains due to spectators travelling to venues in the Olympic Park and at ExCeL and the North Greenwich Arena.

via Bermondsey | Get Ahead of the Games.

Plans for a University Technical College (UTC) on the Southwark College site in Keetons Road have been delayed.

The revelation comes in a report prepared for Monday’s meeting of the council’s education scrutiny sub-committee:

16. The DfE has now approved the deferral of the opening of the UTC to September 2013. This date remains challenging and there is uncertainty associated with the project as a result of the proposed merger of Lewisham and Southwark College and the potential for this to result in the non-availability of the site or the necessary ancillary facilities for the UTC.

Meanwhile Compass Free School is still looking for premises for its proposed secondary school.

The Southwark Free School now has a permanent site for its primary school in Rotherhithe New Road but it still needs a temporary home if it is to open on schedule this autumn.

The council is also considering the potential expansion of St Michael’s College or the City of London Academy to meet the expected need for extra secondary school places in Bermondsey and Rotherhithe.

The Queen and Duke of Edinburgh will visit Greenland Pier on the morning of Wednesday 25 April to name the new royal row barge ‘Gloriana’ that has been built for the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee Pageant in June.

‘Gloriana’ was lowered into the water for the first time on Thursday at Isleworth.

The royal visitors will stop off at Greenland Pier on their way to Greenwich for the reopening of the Cutty Sark and the opening of the Royal River exhibition at the National Maritime Museum.

Greenland Pier will be closed on Wednesday morning and the westbound services at 0944; 1004; 1029; 1059 1129 and eastbound sailings at 1055 and 1113 will not stop at the pier.

“KPMG Thames Clippers are delighted to provide Greenland Pier for this important event and apologise to customers for any inconvenience caused to your intended journey,” said the company in an email to passengers on Friday.