At a meeting of Richmond Council on 23 January, Chertsey Court resident John Repsch asked Council Cabinet Member for the Environment Pamela Fleming to explain why the Council was allowing the the Mortlake Brewery site’s developer to consider slicing off the gardens at Chertsey Court and removing mature trees in order to widen the A 316 Chalkers Corner junction into the Lower Mortlake Road.
He highlighted how unacceptable this was given that Chalkers Corner is an acknowledged air pollution hotspot with readings well over official limits. John pointed out that destroying trees and bringing traffic closer to the Chertsey Court buildings would remove the buffer which gives some protection from noise and pollution.
Councillor Fleming responded that, whilst “sympathetic” to the loss of trees and gardens, the developers had not finalised their plans and these concerns could be raised and considered once a planning application is submitted as part of the planning process.
Ward Councillor Paul Avon also spoke on behalf of Chertsey Court residents. He emphasised their fears and frustrations, especially for those whose health already suffers in the existing conditions and said that, although he was pro-development, it was not acceptable if it was carried out at the expense of existing residents’ wellbeing.
Councillor Avon questioned whether the road-widening scheme would deliver the benefits claimed and urged the Council to influence both TfL (Transport for London) and RHP (Richmond Housing Partnership) against this scheme. He urged Council members to do all in their power to protect the existing trees by immediately issuing a Tree Protection order for the area under threat.