I wonder if you are fully aware of what the LVRPA have been getting up to down on Leyton Marsh by the river bank? You will probably know that they have put in a planning application to LBWF for installing mooring posts along the river bank and constructing what is known as a'hoggin path'. I have complained to Lea Bridge councillors about both of these, knowing that the LVRPA had at the same time erected signs declaring "Private Mooring". My grounds for complaint have been firstly that in the current dire shortage of housing it is appalling that a publicly-funded body is seeking to limit the ability of boat-dwellers to reside in this part of the river. Secondly I have pointed out that the area where the path is to be developed is in MOL, SSSI and other special protection status and therefore should not be further disturbed.
However the matter is now blowing up out of a local context. The following has come to light from a friend:
- The LVRPA has unlawfully created and brought into use rented residential moorings without planning permission.
- There are complaints about this currently under investigation by Waltham Forest planning enforcement.
- The current planning application for the mooring posts and hoggin path does not appear to be applying for such permission.
- Many if not all the boats at the new moorings on Leyton Marsh who are now paying rent to the LVRPA are occupied as the full time main residence of the occupants. The moorings should require residential planning permission for the LVRPA to operate them legitimately as a commercial concern.
- The LVRPA have colluded in encouraging boat owners to sign agreements that prohibit overnight staying on the boats, in the knowledge that they will be immediately in breach of their contracts and this illustrates the cynicism of the LVRPA and their intention to raise revenue by fair means or foul. Boat dwellers are being abused as they are paying for mooring agreements which give them no rights of residence beyond those they had previously.
I believe that Waltham Forest should not be approving an application that seeks to provide facilities in support of an unauthorised land usage which is currently under investigation. It would appear that the LVRPA are acting unlawfully as they do not have powers to provide moorings for residential use.
Stella, this is happening in your constituency, but the impact of what's happening to the boat-dwellers spreads to neighbouring areas. Will you convey to LVRPA your disapproval of their actions? Will you liaise with your fellow Lea-riparian MPs?
I hope to hear from you soon.