Bromley Unitary Development Plan

Proof of Philip Kolvin

Crystal Palace Park

Crystal Palace Campaign

Section 1

"A measure of a City's greatness is to be found in the quality of its public spaces and parks."

John Ruskin


Qualifications and background

Philip Kolvin of 13 Winterbrook Road, London SE24 9HZ will say:


I am a barrister, having qualified in 1985. A substantial proportion of my work is in planning, local government and licensing.


In planning, I act principally for local authorities, but have also worked for developers and third party objectors. I have promoted, and opposed, major development schemes, and have also promoted a Unitary Development Plan in Sheffield when, in an inquiry lasting a year, the Council was successful in defeating over 300 live objections to the Plan. I have appeared in a number of leading cases in the field of environmental assessment. Over the last year I have helped to promote or defend two major development schemes - a 200 hectare industrial regeneration project on green land in Rochdale and a conjoined call-in inquiry into 3 housing schemes totalling 2,450 homes on three sites in Kent, including a Green Belt site.


In licensing, I have acted for local authorities and for independents and national multiples in the fields, principally, of entertainments, betting and night café licensing.


I was for three years the Vice Chairman of the Upper Norwood Improvement Team, a cross-borough forum of local authorities, and business and residents' associations devoted, as its name implies, to the improvement of the area.


I am the Managing Editor of a major new work on licensing: Licensed Premises, Law and Practice (Butterworths, 2004). I am a contributor to Halsburys Laws on the Environment, with a specialist contribution on Contaminated Land. I have written and published many articles in the fields of licensing and employment law, and wrote a commentary on the Security Services Act 1995. I have also written on criminological matters, and have co-published articles and chapters, for example in the leading text the Principles and Practice of Forensic Psychiatry and the British Medical Journal, on the transmission of delinquency through generations.


In 1997, disturbed by the proposals for the multiplex cinema development at Crystal Palace Park, I offered the Crystal Palace Campaign the opportunity for pro bono advice. In January 1998, the Campaign invited me to become Chairman. Although I knew that it was likely to be a substantial drain on my time and energy, I felt it my civic duty to accept. I have been Chairman ever since.


I am not an independent witness, obviously, but have spent 6 years listening closely to the stakeholders in this Park. I have directed their consultation studies, and am principally responsible for the genesis of the Crystal Palace Park stakeholders' forum. I therefore feel able to offer a balanced view. In any event, I would wish that the evidence I present be judged on its merits rather than its provenance.


This proof is written by reference to objections made by myself personally and on behalf of the Crystal Palace Campaign. In addition, I am speaking to support the objections of the Dulwich Society, the Sydenham Society, the Norwood Society, the Crystal Palace Foundation (in all but two of its objections [1]) and the Stradella and Springfield Residents' Association. The first three bodies are substantial amenity societies, the fourth is the main body concerned with the heritage of Crystal Palace, and the fifth is a residents' association. Brief statements from the Dulwich, Sydenham and Norwood Societies and the Crystal Palace Foundation are at appendices 37-40 respectively. I am also speaking for approximately 49 individuals.


For the sake of clarity, I have appended copies of the Crystal Palace Campaign's objections to the First and Second Deposit Drafts of the Unitary Development Plan [2]. I have highlighted in bold those objections which are the subject of this proof of evidence and therefore of my appearance at this Inquiry.

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[1] - The Foundation will speak for itself on the removal of the MOL designation at Proposal Site 9, embracing policy G2 (Chapter 8) and the Schedule of Proposal Sites (Chapter 16).

[2] - Appendix 41

©Philip Kolvin