Greenwich Square Marketing…

So today I’m curious to hear from people who went to Greenwich Square’s ‘Opening Event.’ In the interests of openness, I was asked by Hadley Mace, but I can’t go to events when I’m specifically invited – the paper bag really gets in the way, and I feel less able to just ‘slip in’.  So I’m very interested to hear whether your experience was anything like that of Jon’s.

Jon lives locally and wasn’t actually planning to buy – he just wants to know how the development will affect him and his neighbours, and I suspect that this event wasn’t really for him. He tells me:

Their first question was ‘can you afford a deposit to be placed today?’ – before even showing us anything!

I can see why he was irked that the Site Manager kept referring to her boss as a VIP who knew nothing and went on to make us feel unwelcome though to be fair, he probably IS a VIP to her, and it’s not unusual for bosses to know nothing, though making theoretical potential purchasers unwelcome is unusual.

Jon reckons (and I’m assuming he means the sales team here)  They lied about the history of the site. No mention of the hospital one bit.

Now, I suspect this could just be ignorance, rather than deliberate lying. Why would they know about the history of the site, they’re trying to sell what it is now. Bet they didn’t mention it was the old workhouse, either… ;-) It’s not something  that can be twisted for the purpose of sales into anything romantic:  ’the old schoolhouse’ ‘the old bakery,’ the old dog biscuit factory’ – ‘the old workhouse’ doesn’t have the same kind of ring to it.

And I can’t for a moment think why they rejected the name the old place used to have, according to Mary Mills – ‘Catsbrains’. That, for me would be a deal-sealer…

I note that the proposals for new street names are beyond bland and out the other side, namechecking generic hedgerow plants – no mention of Greenwich, or anything to do with the site’s (fascinating) history, which is a real shame – anyone would think this was a new-build town in the middle of the country with no past whatsoevr. But is it really a deliberate attempt to obliterate the past. I doubt it. I don’t think they’re actually lying about the history- perhaps more ‘not caring…’

Jon asked about parking and was told there will plenty of on-street permits available. Jon believes (and I remember this too) this is something the developer was refused Jon asks who who is lying here? Calvert road is already full of traffic from Wing Wah buffet without adding to it.

It all seems to have ended rather badly.

I challenged them with issues known about the site such as the trees, the services being provided i.e. leisure centre and then the parking. We were almost pushed out of the door so as not to raise the alarm for other prospective victims.

I am worried that the whole site is going to go in for retrospective planning permission to cram more houses on there than initially agreed and the parking is a major concern.

Blimey. I really rather wish I had gone now. But this is just one person’s experience. I would love to hear from other people who went along. Was the evening really this combative? Were you able to raise concerns and actually have them answered? Or did you find it all rather exciting and feel yourself reaching for that cheque book?

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11 Comments to “Greenwich Square Marketing…”

  1. Fatty Fatty BumBum says:

    The ‘VIP Launch’ of New Capital Quay happened last Friday too, wonder if anyone went to it and how it went?

    Between Greenwich Square, New Capital Quay, Lovels, Paynes & Borthwick etc…. the race is on to flog crappy looking flats in Greenwich.

  2. Darryl says:

    I’ve been invited to an event tonight – sounds, er, promising!

    The website – is dire, and its map of “local” amentities is hilarious – denying the existence of Charlton and Woolwich, yet trying to hang onto the cooler coat-tails of Deptford.

  3. What actually IS a ‘Lifestyle Quarter’ anyway? Does it mean that everywhere else no one gets to have style of life?

  4. scared of chives says:

    …and doesn’t their PDF (March 2013) have places that have closed down like rodents’ choice, Kerala Zone…?

  5. Nelson's Left Eye says:

    I heard the reps suggesting they would be offering parking spaces in Restell Close.

    I’m sure that will be a surprise to the residents of that private road!

  6. Jon says:

    Definitely no free spaces in Restell Close! I suppose owners may choose to sublet their allocated space, but that’ll be a handful at the very most…

  7. Vanbrugh Lass says:

    My understanding for new builds is that they are not allowed any external parking permits and applications to the parking division are thrown out. i hope that is true…

    I have been trying to look at the Greenwich Square website for info on how much underground parking they are providing for. There is already zero parking on the bottom half of Vanbrugh Hill (a legacy from the days when there used to be a hospital there, i guess…) and i have tried emailing Greenwich Council to ask if street parking can be extended to this part of the Hill – at the least it would slow down the joyriders. Would appreciate anyone else on Vanbrugh Hill and surrounding streets firing off an email/letter to the same effect to help my clause – there is already no space on the side roads!!!

  8. Bob says:


    Me and my wife went to the ‘VIP’ opening last week, mainly out of interest in what they were planning, as we used to live in the Plaza.

    They had a model of what it was all going to look like, but I couldn’t believe how packed it was all going to be.

    But that didn’t stop more than half of the available flats for the 1st phase already being snapped up and crossed out in red in as SOLD on the price sheet.

    We were told that there is no available parking on the roads, apart from the underground car park, and even those parking spaces were only available for the 3 bedroom flats which are just over £500k, plus another £20k for the actually parking space.

    The ‘quality’ of the showrooms where good, but that’s no indication of the quality of the actual main buildings, I am just hoping for something better than the Greenwich Millennium Village.

    With so many extra people coming, I wonder how the train trips into London from Maze Hill are going keep up.

  9. Aliyah says:

    I just found a very interesting article about the old workhouses on which these flats will be built.
    It is very informative with a plan of the old buildings and details about the lives of the inmates of the old workhouses…. who were apparently woefully underfed and treated brutally.
    It makes an interesting contrast to the Lifestyle Quarter which is coming… its sad that all this history is being lost

  10. T Plautus says:

    Aliyah, they are not being built on top of an attractive-looking workhouse – that went decades ago. They are being built on the site of what used to be the hospital. While it was nice having a hospital on the doorstep it was no beauty – an enormous concrete lump in the neo-Brutalist style which, if it were proposed today, would put SE London’s bloggers and their readers into a terminal angst-fest like we’ve never seen.

    Still, at least it wasn’t a Lifestyle Quarter.

  11. JT says:

    I live more or less across the road from the marketing suite and popped in today. I was quite surprised at how sales driven the whole thing is. I mean, I know it’s a marketing suite but you would have thought they’d be a bit more accommodating to locals who are just interested in what by anyone’s standards is a fairly significant development going up on their doorsteps. Plus it was midday on Monday and the place was dead.

    So I kind of half pretended I was interested in buying (even though I’d want a garden and anything with outside space is getting on for twice what we paid for our house on Vanbrugh Hill). Anyway, I managed to glean from them that there will be no on-street parking and spaces in the garage (£20k!) will be limited to the three-bed homes. There will be a car club though (as they’ve been such a raging success in London).

    I also found out that the block on the corner of Vanbrugh Hill and Woolwich Rd (facing the Plaza) will be the leisure centre and council offices on the first three floors and social housing above them. The guy strongly suggested that the supermarket on Woolwich Rd would be a Sainsbury’s (obviously not content with opening a massive new one in Charlton).