Balham facelift underway

Wandsworth Guardian: The urban makeover follows the town's naming as one of the ‘Best Places to Live in Britain’ two years in a row. The urban makeover follows the town's naming as one of the ‘Best Places to Live in Britain’ two years in a row.

A series of artworks will be popping up around Balham, as part of a regeneration drive in the area.

The urban makeover follows the town's naming as one of the ‘Best Places to Live in Britain’ two years in a row.

Balham, with its leafy streets and high performing schools, made the Sunday Times list earlier this year and in 2013.

Now striking works of art will breathe life into areas such as Hildreth Street and Bedford Hill Place.

The Balham High Road Railway Bridge and 154 Balham High Road will also be on the receiving end of a cultural enhancement.

Work started on Hildreth Street on Monday March 24.

Street furniture is being pulled up to pave the way for two new trees and a shared space.

It will also be brightened up with new lighting, and facilities for extra market stalls for special events.

Kaya Bou, owner of the Bou clothes shop on the street, is unhappy about the work taking place.

She said: "There’s a massive yellow truck outside my door, which is stopping customers coming in.

"The street’s fine the way it is, I don’t see why I have to miss out on business for it to be changed."

The work in all four areas is set to be completed by June 2014.

Emmanuele Lemonnier, manager of The Wine Tasting shop on Helditch Street, said: "It needs to be done. "It will make the place look much better, which will improve business in the long run.

"We may miss out a bit because of the work, but once it’s done I think we will benefit."

Later in April work will start on the side wall of 154 Balham High Road, which will be brightened up with artwork celebrating the area's architecture. Waitrose car park opposite will have its rails replaced with a low wall clad in green faience tiling. Bedford Hill Place will become a seating area that will sometimes be used as an events venue.

Wandsworth Guardian:

The wall clad in green tiles

It will also benefit from improved lighting and a kiosk.

Work will be starting later in April when it will also be decorated with green tiles.

The Balham High Road Railway Bridge is to be illuminated with new lighting, as well as having its shopfronts upgraded.

Work got underway on Monday March 24, with walls being re-clad in green tiling like the other areas undergoing improvement.

The style is traditional for stations along the Northern Line.

Councillor James Cousins, cabinet member for economic development and business partnerships, said: "This latest regeneration project will help us to build on Balham’s appeal. Some untidy corners are being transformed into attractive, useful and attention grabbing spaces. It’s great news for the area and can only strengthen the town centre economy."

Balham is one of just five locations in London to have made it into the Sunday Times ‘Best places to live in Britain’ list, where it was cited as ‘one of the capital’s most sought after-addresses’.

Wandsworth Council and the Balham Partnership secured £1.4m from the Mayor of London's Outer London Fund, and put up another £0.5m themselves.

Comments (1)

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10:03am Thu 3 Apr 14

chesty36 says...

How about doing something with the horrid, busy and dangerous main road truncating the whole area? Like reducing it to one lane and making pedestrian and cycle friendly?!
How about doing something with the horrid, busy and dangerous main road truncating the whole area? Like reducing it to one lane and making pedestrian and cycle friendly?! chesty36
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