• Exterior View. Drawing by Gulru Arvas.
  • Interior View.  Drawing by Gulru Arvas.

Support our planning application to Transform The Common Room: PA/20/00639/NC

UPDATE 09/07/2020: Thanks to a huge response from local residents, we are pleased to announce The Common Room has now received planning permission from Tower Hamlets Council.  

Roman Road Trust is calling for local people to support our planning application to Transform The Common Room to make sure the plans are approved by the local authority.

Our crowdfunding campaign to Transform The Common Room was launched in January 2020 and ends on 26th May 2020.

Our Planning Application has been submitted to London Borough of Tower Hamlets and is now in the consultation phase. This means local people have the chance to show their support for our application. This will help to increase the chances of the local authority approving our planning application.

Without planning approval, Transform The Common Room cannot happen.

Please act fast

The consultation ends at 23.59 on Thursday 28th May 2020.

Please show you support our planning application to Transform The Common Room by:

To view our full planning application, please go to the Tower Hamlets Planning page and search for: PA/20/00639/NC.


Katie Cooke
Planning Case Officer
Development & Renewal
London Borough of Tower Hamlets Council
2nd Floor | Mulberry Place | Clove Crescent | London | E14 2BG

Dear Katie Cooke,

Re: PA/20/00639/NC for Ford Road, London E3 5NS

I am writing to offer SUPPORT to the application PA/20/00639/NC which proposes single storey rebuilding of the existing community space by the residents’ organisation – Roman Road Trust. The proposal is to develop the existing temporary structure on site to a compliant community space at Ford Road, London E3 5NS. The site is to be classed at D1.

The application, if granted, would result in an improved streetscape, and an increase in economic activity on the street and help improve the visual amenity of the area. These are all aims of the Roman Road Trust.

The choice of materials for the street frontage have been well considered and will add much needed visual amenity to a quiet, dark corner of the Roman Road.

Over many years, there has been a concerted and thoughtful effort to bring this site into use, with consent and collaboration from the community. As such I support it.

Planning Policy

The proposal works with the National Planning Policy Framework (2012), policy 2.15 of the London Plan (2011), policy SP01 and SP12 of the Core Strategy (2010)

This small building and its program will address Tower Hamlet’s Place-making agenda laid out in Section 7 of the Local Plan: “Place-making is an increasingly important national objective. National guidance clearly sets out the challenge for local authorities, stating the need for planning to be “spatial” – dealing with the unique needs and characteristics of places. Place-making is key to delivering the national agenda of creating sustainable communities.

The proposal fulfils the aims of Policy SO25 in delivery of successful place-making which is distinct locally will be reflected by this proposal through the democratic programming created by multiple residents.

The aim of the proposal is to increase diverse use of the high street. This, now more than ever, is the key to the ongoing survival of the high street as a civic space. Policy SP12 requires access to a mixed-use town centre that offers a variety of shops and services. Currently the Roman Road has number of shops but misses other diverse functions. The Common Room provides this.

Policy SO4 asks for vibrant and inclusive town centres making offerings based on their role and function, whilst SP01 asks for venues to deliver cultural and leisure functions. Roman Road cannot only rely on its retail. It is not a destination and currently serves its own community. As such it also requires other offerings such as cultural, skilling and leisure activities that can complement what is happening at The Idea Store.

As a result of the above, we offer support to this proposal. I hope that minimal conditions are placed on the approval, allowing this small not-for-profit local organisation to contribute its effort to the high street as soon as possible. The proposal would have a beneficial impact on the vitality and viability of the Roman Road.

For these reasons, and because Roman Road Trust are committed to making the Roman Road a successful, thriving high street, I request that you APPROVE this application.

Kind regards


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