Local Development – Controversy

Recent proposed changes in planning regulations governing such building works as extensions in back gardens or to the sides of properties have left many members fearful of reduced light or loss of privacy. The changes are designed to support economic growth and allow for some kinds of development without the necessity for planning permission, in order to free the planning system of unnecessary bureaucracy. It is unclear how this will effect or conservation areas since what constitutes ‘permitted development’ may change.

We have welcomed recent Parliamentary moves to rethink the proposals. We expressed a number of views in our letter to local

MP Lynne Featherstone (see full newsletter).

Pinkham Way Saga Rolls On

Barnet Council is still determined to move its entire fleet of dustcarts and cleansing vehicles out of Mill Hill (Barnet) and onto Pinkham Way (Haringey). In addition, the North London Waste Authority still wants to put a waste processing/handling facility on the site. If built, that could open the door to a much bigger plant further down the line.

The Pinkham Way Alliance are raising funds for a full ecological survey of the site.

Communal Air-Raid Shelter in Hollybank at Risk

The Hollybank Action Group is opposing the demolition and development of the Hollybank site, consisting of32garages, a cottage and a copse as well as a WW2 air-raid shelter – all currently sited in the Rookfield CA.

An important part of Britain’s wartime heritage lies hidden on the Hollybank site, off Muswell Hill. A WW2 communal air-raid shelter some five metres long and 1.5 metres wide was built below trees and shrubbery near the rear gardens of Cranmore Way. Dr Gabriel Moshenska from the UCL “Archaeology of Air-Raid Shelters Project” commented that “On a national scale, air-raid shelters are one of the most neglected aspects of our heritage yet they are important to understand and preserve.”

It is not known who the shelter was built for but its size and position suggest that it may have been designed for the residents of Hollybank flats, on Muswell Hill. If any members have any memories of this air-raid shelter , or any further information please contact Helen Finch on helen.finch@btconnect.com

Courier Fraud Warnings

Local police have sent out a warning about courier fraud. The average age of those targeted is 70 years.

The victims are telephoned by someone claiming to be from an authority – usually the police, a bank, or Serious Fraud Office. They are told that their bank account has been compromised and their bank card must be collected. The victim is instructed to hang up and call the Serious Fraud Office/police on a genuine number to check the caller is genuine. The victim dials the number given to them but the fraudster does not disconnect so they are still speaking to the same person. The fraudster then convinces the victim to reveal their PIN number, usually by typing it into the keypad. The fraudster then sends a courier or taxi driver to the victim’s house to collect the bank card. The bank account is then emptied of funds.

Police and banks will NEVER ask for your PIN number or for your bank card so never give these to anyone.

If you are contacted in this way – hang up the phone. Use a different telephone line to contact the police on 101.

St Luke’s Hospital Site Development

The Planning Application for the development of St. Luke’s Hospital site into 173 residential units was submitted to Haringey Council by Hanover in Mid-January 2013. The reference number is HGY/2013/0061 on the Haringey Planning Applications page.

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Alexandra Palace Consults Local People on Regeneration

An unprecedented opportunity has been given to us to comment on the redevelopment of Alexandra Palace by its new Chief Executive, Duncan Wilson. The consultation ended on 6th July but heralds a new episode in the saga of development at the People’s Palace.

Our Ally Pally representatives have been busy monitoring the progress of the plans and most recently met with Duncan specifically to discuss the impact of the proposed redevelopment on our members. They report that they have been impressed with his desire to gain the support of local people. At this time the Trust will remain in control of the redevelopment and our responses will have impact on decisions made.

Duncan stated: ‘Alexandra Palace could become a major international hub for cultural and community events, learning and recreation in the future, if there is support for current plans to regenerate the People’s Palace.’ Duncan was previously responsible for the Old Royal Naval College, Greenwich and Somerset House. Under his stewardship, the Trust has appointed Donald Insall Associates, the historical buildings architectural specialists, to develop a conservation management plan for the Palace. This has now been delivered and urgent repairs are being carried out – both funded by grants from English Heritage.

The Trust also brought in world-renowned architects Terry Farrell & Partners earlier this year to create design concepts based on their vision for the future. An exhibition presenting a set of plans and design concepts took place in the foyer of the ice skating rink with an opportunity to comment using forms supplied.

Pinkham Way Plant – Hearing Suspended

Plans for a giant industrial waste plant in a wooded area off Pinkham Way hit a brick wall during the public examination of the North London Waste Plan (NLWP). This plan was drawn up by seven north London boroughs; Haringey, Barnet, Enfield, Camden, Hackney, Islington and Waltham Forest who call themselves the North London Waste Authority. (NLWA). The site was formerly the Friern Barnet Sewage Works in the 1930s but was left unused and has since developed into a wild area of woodland and wild flowers.

On 12th June a public hearing was held during which the Pinkham Way Alliance was to expand their objections to these plans. The Alliance concluded that instead of being a 15-year planning strategy for north London’s waste, the NLWP was primarily developed to encompass North London Waste Authority strategy, which is to try and procure waste services for its seven member councils for a 30 year period. What should have been a plan-led process was being driven by longer-term financial needs – directly contrary to key principles of the UK planning system.

After five and a half years and the spending of millions of our pounds on the preparation of the NLWP, the hearing was suspended by the inspector after only 90 minutes. In his view, the plan appears legally unsound. He is concerned that the 7 NLWA councils failed in their duty to co-operate with neighbouring authorities outside London, which have historically accepted North London waste onto landfill sites.

The inspector gave the NLWA a short period of time to persuade him that it met its obligations to co-operate. If this can be proven to have happened, then the hearing will commence in the autumn. If not proven, then the North London Waste Plan is irretrievably damaged and the whole process will have to begin from the beginning again.

In the meantime, the Freehold Community Association (FCA), whose hall is right next to Pinkham Way Wood in Hollickwood Park, has applied for the Proposed Pinkham Way site to be made a Village Green. The FCA is asserting that since local residents have, as of right, used the wooded site as an amenity for over 20 years, that its use should remain. Their case will initially be assessed by an independent adjudicator. Haringey Council is sending letters to all who live within 1km of the site to ask for their opinion.

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