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No. 2   May 2015
Welcome to the second e-bulletin from Wandle Valley Forum.  It's a busy time of year and we've news of events and activities from the Wandle and beyond.  Thank you to everyone who responded to our first Bulletin - your feedback is always welcome.   

Warehouse demolition at Merton Priory - The need to keep a watchful eye on development proposals along the Wandle is illustrated by the planned demolition of the Tiger Eye warehouse for the development of 9 flats. This is on a site adjacent to the Wandle Trail and at the southern end of the William Morris works.  The development is located within the historic grounds of Merton Priory and on the projected line of Stane Street.  

Remarkably, there is no recognition of the importance of the site in the development proposals.  Indeed it is proposed to name the development as "Wimbledon Riverside"!  Nor has any effort been made to relate the new building to the Wandle Trail or to adopt environmental technologies appropriate to the evolution of the "green valley" approach throughout the Regional Park.  Wandle Valley Forum is supporting Merton Priory Trust and others in highlighting the significance of this site.
Poulter Park The Wandle Valley Regional Park Trust has been busy at Poulter Park with providing new paths and creating new wetlands. The impact on this wild stretch of the Wandle isn't to everyone's taste but it has removed some of the less appealing gateways (see picture) and brought a new focus to this important area of green space.  
Find the source of the Wandle - So where do you think the Wandle begins? Carshalton Park? Next to a Tesco Express at 1 Brighton Road, South Croydon? Waddon Ponds? Wandle Park? Or maybe way up Chipstead Valley at Mere Pond, Walton on the Hill?

All of these have their champions and we will have to wait till next year to find out.  One of the HLF funded Living Wandle projects for 2016 is to find the true source of the Wandle and this project will be led by the Wandle Trust. If you want to get involved then email the Living Wandle team.

Greater London Plan - The first alterations to the Greater London Plan - which guides all planning policies and decisions across the capital - has just been published.  It includes no fewer than nine references to the Wandle Valley.

The revised London Plan retains the key policy that 
"In areas of deficiency for regional and metropolitan parks, opportunities for the creation of green infrastructure to help address this deficiency should be identified and their implementation should be supported, such as in the Wandle Valley Regional Park." (Policy 2.18 C) 
Greater London National Park - The idea that Greater London should be recognised as a National Park is taking root.  London’s mosaic of gardens, woods, parks and nature reserves covers a remarkable 47% of the capital and the Wandle Valley makes a major contribution to this. The purpose of a Greater London National Park would be similar to other UK National Parks. It would conserve and enhance our natural and cultural heritage, promote opportunities for the understanding and enjoyment of London’s green spaces; and foster the economic and social well being of local communities. A Greater London National Park would be a new kind of national park. Working in partnership with all Londoners to inspire, enable and support the creation of a better environment, a better economy and a better quality of life for visitors, residents and workers.  You can find out more about these proposals and feed in your views by reading the Green Paper which has been published for comment.

Wandle Valley Forum provides support and an independent voice for the community groups, voluntary organisations and people who share a passion for the Wandle.  Support us by offering your time or a donation.  You can contact us by email, visit our website or get involved on twitter or facebook.

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