St Mary’s Lodge



There is a new scheme proposed for the Lodge

The architect Tom Stebbing presented the scheme in February to the Hackney Society Planning Group preparatory to taking it to the Council for pre-application discussions (a “pre-app”). The documents can be found here:

There are other links at the bottom of the page.


We are still some way from an application but from the amount of work done this appears to be a serious attempt to develop the site and one which is seeking local approval. It is being done by the Vishnitz community which are the current owners of the site. The site is now smaller than the site for a previous application which included part of the Tora Etz Chaim (TEC) synagogue adjacent on Lordship Road.  There is still existing planning approval for a new synagogue on that site although no building has commenced.

The plan, although superior in design, follows the most recent planning application in restoring (and enlarging) the Lodge with a separate building reaching to the far (Western) end of the site adjacent to the recently converted “nineteen thirties” houses.

The problem with the site is the size of the development which is very large to fit into the size of the site available. We are probably talking about 600 pupils or so. There are also transport implications.  Buses would have to enter and exit the site very near the Lordship Park/Road intersection. The Design and Access statement and the transport document would be good starts for approaching the development.

As is well known, the site’s use is restricted to Education or possibly community use and was sold by the Council at an undervalue because of that covenant.  However, speaking from a conservation viewpoint, local groups, including the Conservation Area Advisory Committee, have suggested that the community could negotiate an alternative educational provision in return for allowing the site to be developed for residential purposes providing an income for a school on an alternative site. The latter has more chance of ending up with an acceptable scheme to preserve and enhance the Lodge.










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