The Knowle Society is delighted to announce that SMBC has agreed to work with the Society in holding a public meeting about the controversial Safe Routes To School proposal for Arden School. This is to be held at 7.30pm on Thursday 16th July [NOT 19th June as earlier notified] in Knowle Village Hall. Exhibition available from 6.30pm.
All points of view will be considered in the questions, however it would be a great help to the Chairman if you were able to outline in advance the nature/import (not the full content) of your question or the point you wish to make. This is not an obligation but in practice your point would be more likely to be given airtime if there are a lot of people wishing to speak. Please email the meeting chairman at
firstname.lastname@example.org – the chairman of the meeting who has been agreed by both SMBC and The Knowle Society, will be Dave Pinwell, CEO of Solihull SUSTAiN and a Trustee Director of The Knowle Society.
How is The Knowle Society planning to be involved in the discussions concerning this proposed development?
A planning application is expected to be submitted to Solihull MBC in the near future for the construction of a supermarket for Sainsbury in Dorridge. This has been widely mentioned in the press and a public consultation meeting has been held. At these it has been explained that the proposal will involve the replacement of Forest Court and the incorporation of the large car park behind into the store.
As this development is in Dorridge, it is outside the area which Knowle Society normally considers to be of direct interest. However it seems clear that the development has the potential to impact on the success of shops in Knowle and that much of the traffic attracted by the store is very likely to pass through Knowle. On this basis we have decided to pay close attention to these aspects and have accordingly met with representatives of Sainsbury to ensure that we are fully aware of the progression of their planning. This contact is being continued, especially as regards the routes to be followed by lorries supplying the store. It seems at the moment that these will pass through Knowle by some route. It will not be possible to see what effect we have had on the proposals until the planning application has been submitted. When this happens we will have another very large list of documents to understand before we can make our submission to the Council.
The plans as they were at the time of the public consultation in 2008 can be viewed by pasting this URL into your web browser:
We understand that some changes have been made to the plans since that time.
Solihull Council is proposing a humped road crossing between Knowle (Jobs Close) Park and Nos. 89 and 93 Lodge Road. This will be combined with a narrowing of the road on the Scout Hut side. An SMBC survey form dated 26th May addressed to ‘Residents of Lodge Road’ is to be returned by 5th June.
The path from St Johns Close past the Scout Hut joins Lodge Road between Nos 89 and 93 Lodge Road. The crossing would be immediately opposite that path. The entrance to the park is just a few yards (‘metres’ to the imperially challenged) from the proposed crossing.
Many residents when questioned about the proposals for the Safe Routes To School project have highlighted addressing the crossing of Lodge Road as being of real priority and value compared with the SRTS project.
Update on The Knowle Society’s understanding of the proposal to develop a Waitrose store in Knowle.
It is general knowledge that a development company, acting on behalf of Waitrose (part of The John Lewis Partnership) is intending to submit an application for a Waitrose food store in Knowle.
Representatives of Knowle Society have had two preliminary meetings with the person in charge of this scheme, in which we were told (in confidence) of their interest in the development. At that stage the plans were no more than general thoughts. We were told that they would not normally have approached us at that stage as their plans were not advanced enough, but they felt that the news about the Sainsbury plans required them to do so.
We have had a second meeting to see how their plans were developing and this enabled us to comment on aspects we were not comfortable with. However there was nothing concrete enough for us to comment publicly upon.
Even though the news about the intention to build the store is now public we do not have solid enough information to comment upon. We are awaiting further contact with the company and will ensure that Members of the Society are given any information as soon as possible.
The Trustee Directors decided at their May 2009 meeting to report the topics that were discussed at their committee meeting. Discussion on Society matters is welcomed on the ‘Forum’.
In order of discussion:
1. A minute’s silence to remember former Director Derek Mellor and to consider a fitting means of recognising his huge contribution to the Society.
2. Update on Knowle Green Community Project – initial planning steps commencing.
3. Plans for the Society’s part in the Knowle Festival in June.
4. Decision to abandon attempts to explore a meeting about the NHS Trust.
5. Safe Routes to School project update – concern at lack of public meeting, plans to lobby action against current proposals.
6. Bus Timetable changes – notification of impending new timetable.
7. Christmas Lights – update.
8. Updates on Marina planning application and Sainsburys and Waitrose projects.
9. Proposed new Environment (natural world) committee for the Society.
10. Agreed to obtain costs for new display/storage cabinets for the Local History Centre.
11. Agreed to Bryan Smart becoming the new Membership Secretary.
12. Website and Newsletter content discussion.