Where do the children play?

March 18th, 2010

282 Goldhawk Road

I’ve been looking at the plans for 282 Goldhawk Road by Peter Barber architects and recently reading the Hansard transcript of the second reading of the 1909 Housing Act.  Despite the passage of just over 100 years, the English is clear and the reasoning beyond question.  Dear Mr Barber where do the children play?

“England is not so destitute of land upon which to house its poor that they should be housed in working class tenements without a backyard in which to chop the wood and put the coal, and in which the children can play whilst the mother is able to keep a friendly eye on them through the washhouse window, and at the same time continue to carry on her domestic duties.

All this is impossible in back-to-back houses, where the children have only got a stuffy room for a playground; and in the days of rapid traction you have no right to relegate children to play in a small front garden, or in the road or street, when the community is rich enough to provide the humblest garden in the majority of cases, and some measure of a backyard in which the youngsters can play whilst the domestic duties in the house are being carried out.

This can be done better in through ventilated houses with a backyard and a garden than is possible in the case of back-to-back houses.”


Peter Barber architects have visited my blog:-

A visitor from office.peterbarberarchitects.com (
arrived from www.google.co.uk 282 goldhawk road cameron 1-10,
and visited www.singleaspect.org.uk/?cat=5
at 15:50:58 on Friday, June 4, 2010.
This visitor used Mozilla/5.0 (Windows; U; Windows NT 5.1; en-GB;
rv: Firefox/3.0.19.

That’s something to celebrate. They won’t change the design though, sadly.  They have already got planning permission the project has been stopped.

UPDATE: I went to look at it yesterday 23/6/2010 and things are looking up.  There are indications that the plans may be reviewed, for details please contact the Residents’ association at ashchurchresidents@hotmail.com

UPDATE: The residents’ association plans are moving on, I received this today 11/9/2010:-

Following Harry Phibb’s newsletter mentioning plans to inlcude 292 and 280 Goldhawk Road in our favourite development, we have now met Nick Johnson, the council executive who Cllr Greenhalgh asked to review the 282 plans back in May.
He assured us the 282 development will not go ahead as planned, and that our many concerns have been taken on board. The development may include the 292 site (on the corner of Ashchurch Park Villas), which Mr Johnson thinks willenable them to deliver a better development which respects the local area. He said 280, the old surgery on the corner ofAshchurch Grove is not included in this development.
We expect another update before the meeting , so come and hear more and have your say.
Other business will include
  • – election of officers – we are looking for someone to take on Neighbourhood Watch
  • – agreeing a constitution and subscrpition for ARA
  • – update on our FOI on the trees on the 282 site – we have a victory to report!
  • antisocial behaviour on 282 site
  • – drugs, dangerous dogs etc
  • -issues relating to Ravenscourt Park
  • – developments in Askew Road
and the Starch Green event in July –  for more on that see below.

If you were one of the 300 or so people who attended the very successful all day event at Starch Green on 26th June. The architects promised they would put togethera summary of the many exciting ideas contributed by those that attended for improving the Starch Green area.

They now invite you to come  review the Exhibition and enjoy a glass of wine.
When : Tuesday 21st September 2010 from 6  8pm

Where : The Mayor’s Foyer at Hammersmith Town Hall (Courtesy of the Mayor)

Please email Melanie Whitlock (whitlockmelanie@hotmail.com)  if you’d like to come, they need numbers in advance.
Many thanks
Fiona Anderson
Chair, Ashchurch Residents Assocation

UPDATE: This development is on hold following protests by the residents associaton the Aschurch Residents Association and the subsequent intervention of Nick Johnson head of H&F Homes.


UPDATE: Thanks to A. Hussein of Design of Homes I have been able to add the following graphic to this article from the Essex Design Initiative website.

Click the image for the whole document

A film from the BFI which explores the same subject.

Low Level Housing 1975 (free to watch)

Policy for children’s play is crucial – and not just for better health

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