Borough, Bankside and Bermondsey

St Thomas Street Social Regeneration Charter

Over the last two decades, Southwark has seen a variety of regeneration programmes delivered which has enabled us to rise from the 12th most deprived Borough in the UK (out of 326) to the 41st. We want to continue this improvement and to continue to explore the best possible ways of improving the life chances of our residents.

What is a social regeneration charter

A social regeneration charter is a tool for creating a common vision and programme to improve the well-being of residents in and around an area. In the Autumn of 2017 the council carried out our largest ever community engagement exercise, the Southwark Conversation (see feedback report and further analysis) to explore local perceptions and experiences of the regeneration that has taken place in the borough over the last decades. We had almost 3,000 responses which has guided the creation of the Regeneration That Works for All Framework and the Social Regeneration Indicators which was approved by Cabinet in January 2019 and paves the way for a series of social regeneration charters for areas with concentrations of development activity. The first charter was created for Canada Water in December 2018 after a detailed research exercise with the local community, and a draft charter for the Old Kent Road was prepared in September 2019.

Why St Thomas Street

London Bridge has experienced waves of organic change over the last few decades, with many projects having been completed including Hay’s Galleria, More London, The Shard, London Bridge Station, Guys Cancer Centre, One Tower Bridge, The Dixon, and Science Gallery London. Following the completion of the London Bridge station, several new developments are now proposed along St Thomas Street, to maximise the opportunity presented by the increase in public transport capacity (which has grown from 55 to 90 million passengers a year).

Research to inform the charter

The council is keen to prepare a social regeneration charter for St Thomas Street, to maximise the regeneration benefits available from new developments for local people. As a first step in the process of preparing a charter, a social research exercise (PDF, 48.5mb) has been carried out to develop a set of baseline indicators for the area. A short summary (PDF, 2.3mb) of the social research is also available.

Charter on tour: we want to hear your views

To help develop the charter for St Thomas Street, a workshop was organised as part of the London Bridge & West Bermondsey ward panel meeting, on Wednesday 25 September 6.30pm at 160 Tooley Street. The workshop presented the research findings and discussed a variety of themes and potential initiatives that could be developed to help maximise regeneration benefits for local people.

Following the workshop, a draft charter has been created based on the themes identified during the community research and was approved by Cabinet on 17 December 2019. A detailed consultation is now being carried out to obtain as many project ideas which could benefit the local community as possible, and so far three themed tours of the area have been carried out.

27 January 2020 – Tour of facilities for young people, where we visited Marlborough Sports Garden, Resonance FM, Science Gallery London Young Leaders, Whites Grounds skatepark and Downside Fisher Youth Club.

6 February 2020 – Jobs workshop to hear how partners create opportunities for local people at the skills centre. Step one is Southwark Works, an outreach service that helps local people find training and work. Step two is the Construction skills centre for anyone interested in accessing work at any of the construction sites across Southwark. Step three is Employ SE1 which is working with employers across the area to coordinate new opportunities. We also heard about the case study of Shard Jobs which acted as a coordination service within the Shard connecting to each of the tenants and suppliers at the building to open up interviews for jobs for local people provided by referral organisations such as Southwark Works.

14 February 2020 – Tour of open spaces visiting gardens which are lovingly tended by the Tabard Growers, an umbrella organisation that promotes greening and food growing across housing estates on either side of Long Lane. We heard from Bankside Open Spaces Trust (BOST) about their Future Gardeners initiative to get local people into careers in horticulture with an inspiring training programme that immerses candidates in a wide range of opportunities. Leathermarket JMB gave us a tour of their estates and we visited the Kipling Rooftop Garden project which plans to turn a huge empty roof space into a water meadow with food growing and community gardens. We visited Christy’s Walk, a proposal by Bermondsey Street. London has long been lobbying to complete the pedestrian link between Tanner Street Park to Mary Magdalene Parks to relieve the heavy footfall on narrow pavements along Bermondsey Street. The walk is named after the Christy Bermondsey works was reputedly the largest manufacturer of hats in the world.

A further tour of workspaces in the area is being planned. If you'd like to attend, contact us using the details below. The final step is to incorporate any changes to the charter made during these visits and to go back to Cabinet in the summer of 2020 to finalise the charter.

Place a pin in your map ward

Alongside the charter, the council has launched a call out to all local residents and stakeholders for project ideas to improve their neighbourhoods. This could be funded by the local Community Infrastructure Levy (CIL), using a new easy to use Commonplace website tool, which allows people to drop a pin in a map of their ward.

If you have any questions about the charter, contact:

Dan Taylor
Programme manager
020 75255450

Page last updated: 11 July 2024


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